BRICK – Despite the rainy and foggy weather, residents came out to shop local at the Brick Township Farmers’ Market.
The market was slated to open on May 7; however, it was pushed back a week due to a terrible storm. Rain traveled to the following Saturday, but many visitors still made their way out to Windward Beach to check out local farmers, producers, artisans and more.
“We always expect a big crowd for the market. We average about 1,200 guests every market. Even when it’s raining the number may go down, but when you add it up, we average about that many people per week,” said Recreation Department coordinator Christine Hessenkemper.
Hessenkemper has been organizing the market since it opened in 2015. This year, she said that the Farmers’ Market has a lot of surprises as several new vendors have joined the roster.
“This year we have a lot more vendors who are coming in, we’re about 57 vendors. We have a couple new farmers that joined the market this year, a new distillery, there’s so many,” she said. “What’s new this year is that the last Saturday of every month, we opened the market up to artisan crafters. We have two new crafters: a glass blower with glass work and someone who is selling pottery.”
In addition to the new vendors, live music is scheduled to perform at the market about once or twice a month.
Hessenkemper explained how amazing it is to see the market grow over the past couple of years.
“A lot of the vendors are returning ones and they’ve stuck with our market over the years,” she said. Some of them get so popular that they open their own store. In that way, she’s proud of the market being a starting point for them.
Some new vendors joining the market this summer includes:
- Orchardside Farm – Fresh in-season vegetables and farm to table fresh prep salads and grain basted entrees.
- BBQ on Wheels Catering – Smoked chicken, pork ribs, smoked turkey breast.
- Little Box Farms – Micro greens, nut-free vegan pesto, salad blends.
- Dachshund Distilling – Artisan rum.
A full list of vendors can be found on the Brick Township Farmers’ Market website at bricktownship.net/index.php/brick-farmers-market.
“We also have the volunteer youth club that’s there every Saturday to help shoppers with their bags if things get too heavy. They go around with a wagon and help bring goods to the customers’ cars. This year they were handing out reusable bags too,” Hessenkemper said.
“I want to give a big thanks to the mayor, the council and the administration for supporting the Farmers’ Market 100%. In addition, the Parks Department and Public Works for maintaining the parking lot, making sure the park looks good. It’s a team effort with the market,” Hessenkemper added.
The Brick Township Farmers’ Market is open on Saturdays from 8:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. until September 24.