Growing vegetables, herbs, and baking bread loaves for the farmer’s market is therapeutic horticulture for Community Roots. This is the non-profit’s fourth year at the market. And board member Scott Patterson says the idea for those involved with Community Roots is to improve health and wellness by being outside and producing food that you can eat.
Community Roots has a three-pronged purpose:
1. Provide community garden space and sell at the market
2. The Farm to School program
3. Provide a community service opportunity for juvenile and MERIT court participants.
When shoppers stop at the Community Roots space on the west side of the Public Square, they’ll find a large variety of produce and sometimes even special promotions. Those include free art painted by board member Kim Frye with purchase and even a free cucumber for a song.
The Community Roots staff agrees that the best part of participating in the farmer’s market is interacting with the customers. Emily Platt says, “It’s fun to talk to people.”
Volunteers are always welcome to participate in their mission. They’re located on West Gambier Street in the former Glass Gardens greenhouse location.
The organization’s board is made up of Frye, Patterson, Emily Platt, Quentin Platt, Haley Behnfeldt, and Ken Lane. Nancy Bevan coordinates the Farm-to-School program. Sidney Strite is the current AmeriCorps Vista staffer.
You can follow Community Roots on Facebook and Instagram.
The Mount Vernon Farmers Market enriches the community by providing shoppers the opportunity to interact with those who grow their food. Local food is fresh, better for the environment, has less waste and plastic packaging, and improves the local economy. Two dozen vendors gather each Saturday morning.
The market prides itself on encouraging shoppers of all income levels to participate. SNAP incentives are available as well as Produce Perks, WIC, and programs for seniors. The popular Eat Fresh, Eat Local program from the Knox County Task Force for Older adults will continue through October 8. The market itself continues each Saturday morning from 9 a.m. to noon through October 29th on the square.
To find out about becoming a vendor the 2023 season contact Market Coordinator Marty Trese by email at email@example.com or send a message to the market’s Facebook page.