New farmers market is a long-sought ‘win’ for Marysville

MARYSVILLE — A farmers market could be opening in Marysville this summer, for the first time in a decade.

An agreement between the city and Allen Creek Community Church would install the market in the vacant parking lot next to City Hall starting June 27.

The Marysville City Council is scheduled to vote on the deal at its April 13 meeting.

The market would operate every Saturday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. through Oct. 31.

A farmers market used to operate in Comeford Park from 2003 to 2005, but stopped when the organizer relocated.

Jared Galde, the volunteer operations manager for the new market, said the church has been working since last year to make a farmers market a reality.

“The last hurdle,” Galde said, is “we’re still piecing together the produce side of it.”

There are about 20 vendors lined up so far, Galde said, and the parking lot is large enough to hold three times that many.

In addition to sellers of fresh fruit and vegetables, there will be prepared food and crafts.

“Our goal is to stay 70 percent food and 30 percent crafts,” Galde said.

Jim Ballew, the city’s parks and recreation director, said a farmers market has been a long-sought amenity in line with Marysville’s “Healthy Communities” initiative.

That initiative, launched in 2006, set as its goal an improvement in the overall health of the city’s population.

The city has undertaken a number of projects for that initiative, including bicycle lanes and trails, low-cost physical activities such as free swim nights at Marysville Pilchuck High School in the summer, and promoting healthy eating through the Marysville Community Food Bank and the Marysville School District.

“The only thing we haven’t achieved was a farmers market, so I think this is a win for us,” Ballew said.

The terms of the deal would have the church’s nonprofit, AC3 Community Center, rent the parking lot from the city for $100 per month. The church would in turn rent market stalls to vendors.

“The actual profits from this will benefit our Seeds of Grace Food Bank this season,” Galde said.

The contract between church and city would be for one year, with an option to renew it for an additional two years.

Chris Winters: 425-374-4165; cwinters@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @Chris_At_Herald.

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