The DeKalb County Farmers Market continues its annual tradition kicking off the 2020 season on Tuesday, June 2, at the VFW Fairgrounds in Fort Payne at 3 p.m.
DeKalb County Farmers Market Board President Grady Dalton said this is the oldest farmers market in northeast Alabama and takes place on Tuesdays and Fridays, until supplies last.
“I am expecting 10 to 12 growers this early in the season,” he said.
The amount of harvest and vendors typically increases as the season progresses.
Dalton said in addition to his regular vendors, he has four new vendors coming this year.
Last season ceiling fans were installed to cool the place for growers and shoppers. According to Dalton, they had a good response to the new addition.
“They worked great, we have five fans on each side,” he said.
Dalton said the market sees anywhere between 30 to 35 vendors as the summer continues and the VFW can accommodate up to 40 vendors.
“We will have squash, green tomatoes, turn up greens, onions, cucumbers, cabbages and our local peach man is going to have lots of nectarines on opening day,” he said.
A gentleman from Lookout Mountain will be there with hothouse tomatoes. Dalton said those can be produced year-round and are grown in a controlled environment.
Aside from produce, there will be a vendor selling sweet treats, including cakes, pies, cookies and cupcakes.
“I think we are going to have one of the best seasons that we’ve had. People are hungry for some fresh vegetables,” Dalton said. Next year, the market will celebrate its 40th anniversary.
The DeKalb County Farmer Market will adhere to COVID-19 guidelines and recommendations provided by the state.
“Right now, we are going to spread the vendors out due to the [COVID-19],” he said.
Dalton recommends buyers to keep their distance and said they would not be allowed to handle produce. Instead, they will need to point to what they want, and the items will be bagged for them.
He said all vendors will be required to wear gloves and masks are recommended.
“I want the cleanest market possible,” Dalton said.
He said later on in the season, shoppers can look forward to a variety of meat products that will be available.
Vendor spots are still available, and Dalton said they have plenty of room to accommodate incoming vendors.
To participate, a grower needs to go to the DeKalb County Extension Office at 500 Grand Ave. SW, Suite 300 in Fort Payne and obtain a permit with a list of what they plan to sell.