Local options available at Itawamba Farmers Market
FULTON, Miss. -- For as long as many people can remember, summertime Tuesdays and Fridays has meant it is time to shop the Itawamba Farmers Market for fresh, local produce and goods.
This farmers market is held at the Cypress Pavilion on the campus of Itawamba Community College twice weekly from 2-4 p.m. from June until football season begins in September. This year, a brief fall farmers market is also planned at a time and place to be determined.
The MSU Extension Service received a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Marketing Service to promote local foods. The Extension Center for Government and Community Development is administering the From Gravel Roads to City Streets grant as part of the statewide MSU Extension Growing Your Brand effort. Grant funds were used to help farmers markets in Itawamba, Lowndes, Clay, Noxubee and Monroe counties.
The Itawamba Farmers Market used its funds to develop a new logo and create signs and other marketing materials to identify and promote the market.
Marie Rogers, Itawamba County Extension agent with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the market has 18 tables available to vendors, and usually all are full.
“When it opens each day, it’s standing room only,” Rogers said. “They have a rope across the entrance that they drop to make sure it opens for everyone at the same time.”
Typical products include honey, produce, herbs, baked goods, canned goods, fresh flowers, fruit, soap and a few crafts. Market organizers are serious when they say it is for local items only.
“The products sold are only grown or made in Itawamba and the counties that touch ours in Mississippi,” Rogers said.
Rogers said the farmers market is a great community to be a part of, both as a vendor and a customer.
“You’re not going to find fresher produce at the grocery store or friendlier vendors,” she said. “Our people are great. If one vendor runs out of something, they’ll point you to the next person who has it. Shopping at the farmers market is a great time for everyone to socialize.”
There is a simple application process and a $10 annual fee for vendors to sell at the market. Eddie Moore handles this process and can be reached at 662-760-2037.