When Princeton Farmers’ Market Manager Ginger Toll moved to Princeton in October of 2014 she was excited to get involved in the community. She met fellow town residents Susan Priest, a local baker, and Terri Steiner of Elzire’s Acre Goat Milk Soap at area farm festivals, and the three of them hit it off and knew they could find a way to collaborate.
They realized that Princeton was in need of a farmers’ market and decided to launch one in the winter of 2016. Toll has been the market manager since the summer of 2017 but says that the three women “are truly a team cooperative.”
“We are a committee and contribute equally to the market’s success,” Toll says. “I like to say we’re like a three-legged stool and couldn’t stand without one of us.”
The market is held the first and third Sundays of every month (except February) from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Local farmers, artisans, and crafters gather on the Princeton town common during the warmer months. But it’s a year-round market, so starting November 4 the market will move indoors at the Princeton Town Hall Annex, 6 Town Hall Drive, for the winter.
Toll says that getting the word out about the market and enticing new customers to visit can be tricky. Yet the market draws a consistent crowd with attractions like live music and its year-round schedule.
There is a core group of vendors, and the market welcomes others, such as local artisans, on a per market basis. The vendor list includes Beboo Beads & Jewelry, Elzire’s Acre Goat Milk Soap, Encore’s Closet (homemade pet supplies and products), Heart to Heart handmade cards, Oakdale Farm, which offers year-round fresh organic produce, The Owl’s Nest Farm (organic dog treats and organic candles), Red Barn Cookies, Sap Castle Maple Syrup, Shagbark Farm (jams and hickory syrup), Sweet Cottage Farm (fresh breads & pastries), try a Little Whoopie (whoopie pies), and Walnut Kitchen Homestead (organically raised meat, poultry and eggs).
The market partners with local charities and non-profits and has a community table set up at each event that is offered for free to groups promoting special events, fundraisers, etc. The beneficiaries include Wachusett Food Pantry, Worcester Animal Rescue League, Virginia Thurston Cancer Healing Garden, Audubon, Girls Scouts, and many others.
Toll said they are very grateful to many local businesses that help with financial sponsorship of the market. “We want to mention our heartfelt appreciation to our sponsors who help us give back to local programs, pay our musicians and advertise,” she says.
The current market sponsors are Elzire’s Acre Goat Milk Soap, The Hub of the Hubb, Hunt & Gather Vintage Market, Maggie’s Foods for Pets, Melissa Ruttle Consulting & Decorating, Mountain Barn Restaurant, Open Door realtor Laurie Kraemer, One World Acupuncture, Princeton Family Chiropractic, Sue Magnero Insurance, The Thirsty Lab, and Townline Garage.
“We love being in this community,” Toll says. “As we’re all Princeton residents, it’s especially important to us and we very much enjoy interacting with the public.”
For more information visit m.me/Princetonfarmersmarketgroup, follow ‘Princeton Farmers’ Market Group’ on Facebook, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.