Wet weather and brisk breezes have made for a tumultuous start to spring and Gig Harbor residents aren’t the only ones taking notice.
The growing season is several weeks behind its typical schedule, according to Dale Schultz, market manager for the Gig Harbor Farmer’s Market.
But the wind and rain hasn’t deterred business, which Schultz said has been better than ever with customers coming not only to shop but to visit the market’s cafe for lunch.
“The market flow goes all over the place,” Schultz said. “I’ve gotten good vibes from the vendors.”
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New to the market this year is a Kids Zone play area, providing space for the market’s youngest visitors, and a choice to move the cafe to the back of the market, inviting lunchtime guests to peruse vendors on their way to a midday meal.
We have a lot of the same vendors. We have a lot of antique vendors. We’re considered a Mediterranean-style antique market now.
Dale Schultz, market manager for the Gig Harbor Farmer’s Market
While some changes have been made, tried-and-true favorites have remained to give the market a consistent, reliable feel for shoppers.
“We have a lot of the same vendors,” Schultz said. “We have a lot of antique vendors. We’re considered a Mediterranean-style antique market now.”
Schultz chose to leave the Washington State Farmers Market Association to give himself the freedom to bring in a wider variety of vendors, relying on his knowledge of the area and his understanding of what customers want from their farmer’s market.
“(Leaving) lets me have a lot more different types of vendors here,” he explained. “I can bring a vendor in if I feel it would be a good thing for the community, instead of whether they fit a rule.”
Included in this years vendors are Poulsbo’s Crimson Cove, selling smoked salmon and cheeses, Four Horsemen Brewery from Kent, and fresh produce from local farmers in the Puyallup Valley and Eastern Washington.
We have a great music lineup. Probably the best music in Gig Harbor. We’re in good shape here (and) looking for a nice season.
A live music lineup also helps to draw crowds, with some of Gig Harbors favorite musical groups represented, Schultz said. A full schedule of performers can be found online at gigharborfarmersmarket.com.
“We have a great music lineup. Probably the best music in Gig Harbor,” Schultz said. “We’re in good shape here (and) looking for a nice season.”
The Gig Harbor Farmer’s Market opened April 1 and will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Saturday through September. The market is located at Peninsula Gardens, 5503 Wollochet Drive NW.