HYDE PARK — The Hyde Park Farmers Market is back this weekend, operating out of a new location after being canceled last year due to the pandemic.
The market is open 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Sundays in the Hyde Park Bank parking lot at 54th Street and Lake Park West Avenue. The season runs through Sept. 26.
Sunday’s ribbon-cutting and kickoff event starts 10 a.m., with free swag bags for the first 100 customers and a “special premium gift” for attendees who spend at least $20, new market manager Ticina Williams said.
Alongside farmers’ produce, this year’s market will boost the number of local businesses offering health and wellness products, prepared foods and baked goods, Williams said.
About 13 vendors are confirmed, while Williams hopes to attract a few more as the season progresses.
The open-air market, organized by the South East Chicago Commission and Special Service Area No. 61, will also collaborate with the commission’s Arts and Cultural Capital Lab to offer live entertainment and art installations.
Through the arts lab, the market can tap into “some of the local talent as far as our artists and creatives,” Williams said.
Market organizers are working to make it so vendors can accept SNAP benefits, but that system has not yet been finalized, Williams said.
Masks and social distancing will be “strongly encouraged,” and hand sanitizing stations will be available, Williams said. Vendors are also encouraged to mask up and sanitize their shopping areas.
Williams, a Washington Park resident and Kenwood Academy graduate, officially started as market manager last week. On market days, she’ll be responsible for setting up the site, greeting vendors and answering questions from customers and guests.
“I’ve been inside for the entire year doing remote learning as well as [living] under the shelter in place guidelines,” Williams said. “I’m excited to be out among the people, meet local vendors … and have access to fresh produce.”
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