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Clear skies. Low 74F. Winds light and variable.
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As the Waxahachie Farmers Market moves into its second month of operations sales, records are being set. Contributing factors are the market’s new location, upgrades made during the off-season, and the unique products for sale.
Downtown development director Anita Simpson said the numbers reflect the community’s continued support of the market and its growth.
“Not only are the customer numbers holding steady, vendors are breaking records all over the place,” she said. “We had the grand opening on May 7 and vendors set a brand-new sales record that day of over $21,000 in sales for the grand opening, which is just amazing. You are talking about five hours on a Saturday morning to bring in that much money. Then, for the four weeks in May, vendors broke another sales record. Vendors just beat out last year by a little over $60,000 in sales for May.”
Vendor John Paul Dineen III, co-owner of the Yellow Farmhouse, shared Simpson’s thoughts on the support the market receives from the public. He said the improvements made to the facility before this season opened have added to the market’s success.
“Speaking as a vendor, it is the improvements with the fans, the insulation, the sidewalk that you are talking about and that is showing up in customers,” Dineen said. “Our average customer numbers are greatly increased since being at the new location and they are holding steady. It does not matter if it is hot outside, if it is raining outside or if other events or things are going on. The numbers are holding good and for us as a vendor that is great news to have that foot traffic.”
Before opening in May, the market went through several improvements to enhance the customer experience and make it a destination to go to on the weekend. A thermal barrier was installed inside the metal building to mitigate the heat, along with a couple of big fans to circulate air. The market now has two handicapped parking spaces installed by the front door, along with a sidewalk connecting them to the building’s ramp. Additional electrical outlets were installed on the building’s outside to allow vendors to bring in trailers.
A second sidewalk installed along the side of the building connects the market to the Wags-A-Hachie Dog Park and its parking lot. The dog park, which is directly behind the market, received a six-figure renovation with upgraded amenities and expanded footprint opened. It opened to the public in May. Adjoining the park is the hike and bike trail and the Ellis County Master Gardener Association’s butterfly garden.
“As far as future improvements, we are looking to do something else with the parking lot,” Simpson said. “The parking still can get a little crazy, but hopefully, in coming years, we will get that ironed out and make it an even bigger and better place. We did (install) sod in between the two buildings. We have picnic tables out there and people can enjoy eating the things they buy.”
Each Saturday, the market has a theme offering people something to enjoy and take part in. Upcoming themes include “Crazy for Corn” on June 25, “All Things America” on July 2, “Taste of the Market – All Things Sweet” on July 9, and a pop-up horticulture class July 16.
The Waxahachie Farmers Market is open from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. every Saturday through Oct. 22, rain or shine. Items offered include fresh fruit, locally grown vegetables, eggs, baked goods, honey, cheese, jams, jellies, salsas, locally raised beef and pork, grains, plants, jewelry, clothing, and home décor items. The market is at 701 Howard Road in Waxahachie.
For updates about the market, visit the Downtown Waxahachie Farmers Market Facebook page.
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