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Market Days come to Halsell Street

By Austin Jackson | Published Wednesday, July 18, 2018
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Farm to Table

FARM TO TABLE – Jana Palmer sells Hammer Farms’ selection of fresh produce grown locally in Chico at Bridgeport’s first Market Days, Friday. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Shoppers and seven booths filled with the freshest fare on the local market christened the first Market Days in Bridgeport at the newly minted parking lot downtown.

A steady trickle of shoppers moseyed into shops in between a face painting booth, handmade jewelry, a home-brewery, pickled goods, fresh raised meat and fresh raised vegetables.

The event showcasing locally grown, raised and crafted goods was a success Market Days director Jana Palmer said.

Palmer has spent the past two years connecting local vendors to local shoppers, starting in Decatur. She said a few vendors were unable to come to both the 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Market Days Friday night in Bridgeport and the following Saturday event in the afternoon in Decatur. But considering the start, and where Bridgeport envisions the future, she said it was a great kickoff to an event on the rise.

Cheers

CHEERS – Sewer Rat home brewing partners Asa Hinson (left) and Mike Kelley toast Market Days Friday. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

“It’s been a pretty good success,” she said. “This parking lot is set up to host 40 vendors. When I asked the city about locations they were excited about one day filling the location. They wanted to help create more foot traffic on Fridays and I think we’re starting to see that.”

Bridgeport resident Denise Burns was thrilled to pick up some local squash grown at Debbie Hammer farm in her own backyard.

“It’s great they’re bringing this to Bridgeport,” Burns said. “It was great going to Decatur, I went all the time. But it’s cool they’re starting it up here, too. Saves me a drive.”

In addition to the giant, fresh squash and other vegetables, Sewer Rat home brewery, crafted out of Roanoke was on tap and bringing many connections to the final booth throughout the night.

Mike Kelley and Asa Hinson started making their dark and golden beers recently and said they’re looking to find a home to open a brewery soon. They said they’re interested in Bridgeport and Sanger.

Palmer said the plan for now is to keep the steady trickle from night one and press for more in the future. The seven booths tested the waters and according to the vendors, they’ll be back.

“We’ll be back every Friday,” Palmer said.

In the Bag

IN THE BAG – Kathy Griffith and Denise Bruns celebrate after bagging some fresh produce from Hammer Farms at Market Days Friday night in Bridgeport. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

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