Introduced last July by the RISE Erwin young professional group, the market was modeled after Corbin, Kentucky’s successful Every Man’s Market and quickly became a favorite stop for truck farmers within a 50-mile radius of Unicoi County.
The market was also well attended by community members, whom RISE President Jamie Rice said came downtown not just for fresh produce and the festival-like atmosphere the market created but for the opportunity to reconnect with friends and neighbors.
For RISE, Rice said last year’s weekly markets were great learning experiences from which organizers gained a lot of knowledge as well as ideas on how to improve.
On the recommendation of the markets “loyal farmers” who will all be back again this season and will be joined by a couple of growers new to Erwin, the market is beginning earlier this year to get in on the spring greens and other hearty frost-resistant crops that are now at their peak.
“To go with all that healthy food,” Rice said, the market will offer a different outdoor, family fitness activity each week, “to promote a healthy lifestyle and to promote comradery within the community.
The activities will begin Tuesday with a kid-friendly, family yoga session led by Kim Blaine of Downtown Yoga in Johnson City, starting at 6:45 at the Gathering Place located across Main Avenue from the courthouse parking lot where the market is conducted.
A family Zumba Night is also planned, and on Tuesday, June 20, there will be an Erwin version of downtown Johnson City’s Taco Trek family bike rides with after-the-ride tacos and craft beer downtown. But in a town without a brewery or a taproom, Rice said the downtown Erwin ride will conclude with snow cones.
This Tuesday night, music will be provided by a new downtown business owner, architect and fiddler player Shane Elliott. And this week’s featured food truck will be Project Waffle from Greeneville.
Market hours are 5 to 8 p.m. Vendor booth slots and more information may be obtained by contacting Rice at 423-220-7624 or [email protected]
Email Sue Guinn Legg at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @sueleggjcpress. Like her on Facebook at facebook.com/sueleggjcpress.