DOBSON — Officials in the town of Dobson hope that this year will herald the start of a new offering for town residents that will resonate for years to come.
On May 1, the town will open its inaugural farmer’s market. The market will be held from 9 a.m., until noon on Thursdays through Oct. 23, according to Market Manager Rachel Pace.
Initially, the market will be held on the lawn of the courthouse on Dobson Square, but when the planned Dobson Square Park is completed this fall, the market will move to a new, more permanent location.
“When our park is completed this fall, there will be a dedicated shelter for the market that will house it for years to come,” Pace said enthusiastically. “Everything the farmers need will be there. It’s going to be beautiful.”
While the town has tried to host farmer’s markets in the past, Pace said she thinks this year will prove successful.
“A long time ago, Dobson had attempted to do a farmer’s market, and I don’t believe the timing was exactly right to make it successful,” she said. “But this year, we’re lucky enough to have the full support of both the town and the Cooperative Extension office.”
The extension office will handle all of the necessary farm inspections as well as take care of the applications for vendors, Pace said.
And farmers seem to be supporting the new venture, she added.
“We’re hoping to host over two dozen vendors from around the area, and all vendors will be local producers from either Surry County or surrounding counties,” Pace said.
The market will feature fresh fruits and vegetables in season, but Pace said much more will be available for purchase.
“We’re also going to have meat vendors, goat cheese vendors, honey producers, homemade baked goods as well as a few handmade crafts,” Pace said. “And every week, we want to feature one artist, musician or craftsman and have them come to the market as well.”
Pace said she hopes the community supports the effort, as it could be considered a quality of life issue.
“Both Mount Airy and Elkin have great farmer’s markets, and this is something Dobson needs,” she said. “We’re known as a farming community, and people should have the option to go out and pick up healthy, fresh and local products. This will allow them to do it in their own back yard.
“It’s not only going to provide the resources our community needs, but we hope it will lead to a tighter-knit community,” Pace added.
Keith Strange can be reached at 336-719-1929 or via Twitter @strangereporter.