LOGAN SQUARE — The Logan Square Farmers Market has a new place to set up shop for for the winter.
The beloved market will be held at the Rockwell on the River warehouses at 3029-31 N. Rockwell St. in Avondale beginning Sunday, organizers announced Tuesday.
“Rockwell on the River has granted us access to two adjacent warehouses that affords us over 17,000 square feet of space to accommodate both our 35+ vendors and COVID-19 guidelines this indoor season!” organizers said in an email, adding the warehouses are “only a mile” from Logan Square.
The announcement comes a few weeks after the farmers market was kicked out of The Fields warehouse. Officials with the ground-floor tenant, Cermak Fresh Market, were concerned the farmers market was siphoning business from the grocery store, among other issues.
Market organizer Nilda Esparza was able to extend the outdoor city permit to keep the market going while she worked on finding a new indoor location.
At the Avondale warehouses, the vendors will be split into two groups “with easy shopping access to either building,” organizers said. The vendor layout is posted on the market’s website.
Organizers said shoppers will have access to “ample” free parking on Rockwell Street between Elston and Belmont avenues.
The plan is to hold the market at the warehouses 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sundays through March 28 “with no interruption.” The first hour of shopping will be reserved for those who are at greater risk of contracting COVID-19 or becoming seriously ill.
The indoor market’s sudden departure from The Fields in early November surprised vendors and shoppers. After just two weekends, the market was without a winter location and its vendors were forced to arrange alternative pick-up sites.
Esparza, who is also the interim executive director of the Logan Square Chamber of Commerce, was not involved in the decision to move the market to The Fields, a massive loft building owned by the New York-based development firm Knickpoint Ventures.
Esparza told Block Club she doesn’t blame Cermak officials or Knickpoint Ventures for the shakeup.
“It was a learning curve and they felt like they were potentially losing customers, and we totally understand where they’re coming from. We had to switch gears … and that’s what we did,” Esparza previously said.
This is the first time in recent years the market will be held outside of the neighborhood. In past years, the indoor market was held at Emporium Logan Square and at Pierre’s Bakery, which has since been torn down to make way for a large residential development.