Discerning shoppers will soon have the opportunity to stock their kitchens with fresh, locally-grown produce, locally-sourced meats, and other locally-made goodies once again. The Uptown Martinsville Farmers’ Market opens for the season on Saturday, giving residents and visitors alike the opportunity to browse through stalls stocked by local farmers, bakers, crafters, and more.
Currently, 28 vendors are signed up for the 2022 season, but that number is expected to grow, with more signing on as the season progresses, said Uptown Entrepreneurial Development Director Kimberly Keller-Bonacci. “We can expect to see 40+ vendors each season.”
Last year, she said more than 11,000 customers came through the market. She expects at least that many to visit this year.
Though a specific date is not known for the creation of the market, it has been going (and growing) strong since 1982, operating for more than 40 years in the uptown district. “In earlier years, the market was in another location on Fayette Street,” Keller-Bonacci said, “but moved to the current space in the late 1990s.”
She said the market is beneficial not only to those selling their wares, but to the vibrancy of uptown as a whole.
“The Uptown Martinsville Farmers’ Market is a huge asset to Uptown and the MHC community. The market attracts many customers to the Uptown district which is wonderful for our Uptown businesses. Often times, folks make a day of visiting Uptown, starting with the farmers’ market and venturing to restaurants and stores within the Uptown district. The farmers’ market is a great way to attract customers to the Uptown area. This includes both local citizens and tourists,” because the market welcomes many tourists each season.
She noted that having customers shop and support hometown farmers living in the community means dollars spent at the market remain local, and benefit the community.
The market will operate, rain or shine, from 7 a.m. until 12 p.m. on Saturdays, April 30-Nov. 19. It also will be open on Wednesdays from 7 a.m. until 12 p.m. from July 6 through Sept. 28.
The market is located at 65 West Main Street in Martinsville. For questions, call (276) 632-5688.
The 2022 market sponsors are BTW21, The Lester Group, ValleyStar Credit Union, New College Institute, OakStone Health and Nutrition, SOVAH Health-Martinsville, Uptown Music Fest, Southern Virginia Properties, and the Martinsville Henry County Coalition for Health and Wellness.