It’s finally happening. After the coordination and commitment of a group of business owners, Wickford Village is getting a farmers market.
The first village market kicks off Thursday from 3 to 7 p.m. in the municipal lot behind Brown Street, overlooking the picturesque Wickford waterfront. So far, 10 vendors have submitted the proper paperwork and will be featured in Thursday’s market, including Wildwood Caterers, , , Schartner Farms, food trucks and more.
The three ladies who helped bring this project to fruition are Amelia Smith of , Jennifer Wheeler of and Donna Trottier of .
According to Smith, village business owners began to seriously discuss a farmers market after the closure of Wickford Marketplace last summer.
“There’s a lack of diversity of food in the village,” said Smith. “That’s when we tossed out the idea of a farmers market and food trucks.”
The past few months, the trio has worked to gather vendors, finish paperwork and post flyers to make the village’s first market a reality. On Monday, the North Kingstown Town Council approved the market – just days before the inaugural event was scheduled to kick off.
“The village has a lot to offer,” said Smith. “We have this beautiful waterfront and we should take advantage of it.”
Though event organizers are viewing Thursday’s first market as a “soft open,” they expect big things for its second week which will be the Thursday before Wickford’s biggest event of the year – the Wickford Art Festival.
The group is also hoping to add more vendors and other features to the event, including musical entertainment. (Any performers or musical acts willing to donate their time for the market are encouraged to contact event organizers.) Smith adds she would like to see a candy vendor and a granola vendor.
Hoping to draw people from all over the state (including folks returning from South County beaches), select village owners are extending store hours to 7 p.m. to coincide with the market. For Wheeler, she hopes the farmers market will reinvigorate traffic and business in the historic village.
“When people visit North Kingstown, you bring them to Wickford,” said Wheeler. “Wickford is what makes North Kingstown a special place to live.”
Stop by the farmers market every Thursday this summer from 3 to 7 p.m. Interested in becoming a vendor? Contact Jennifer Wheeler at Jennifer@gratefulheart.com.