Belleville’s first farmers market initiative is imagined as a place where vendors selling fresh fruits and vegetables will share the venue with small-business owners offering everything from local honey to homemade crafts.
The inaugural market takes place Saturday, June 18, township officials recently announced, followed by the third Saturday of each month through October, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Belleville High School, and the first one will feature Montclair Community Farms and its mobile farm stand as an anchor tenant.
Supported by the township’s Green Team, the creation of the farmers market is an extension of other recent township initiatives such as the community garden and last summer’s Green Fair.
“This is another initiative that promotes healthy lifestyles and creating a better Belleville for our residents,” Mayor Michael Melham said. “And, having the chance to come out and pick healthy foods also promotes a sense of community pride. You don’t need to go to a neighboring town — we have it right here in Belleville.”
Gabrielle Bennett-Meany, a member of Belleville’s Green Team as well as vice president of the Board of Education, said the farmers market will have all the things you think of when visiting a fresh farm stand: rows and rows of lettuce, cucumbers, apples, tomatoes, peaches and other produce.
However, the Belleville market has plenty of room to grow.
“We envision it as a place that people who have created small side businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic can come and sell their wares,” she said. “We’d like to also include vendors selling items such as homemade art or small jewelry or pottery or jams and jellies — that type of thing.”
All vendors are required to submit a completed packet by June 3. Participation fees are $25 per Saturday attending, or $125 for all five Saturdays.
The vendor’s application form is available on the township website at www.bellevillenj.org/_Content/pdf/Farmers-Market-2022-Vendor-Application.pdf.
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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.