The Windmill Farm & Craft Market opens this Saturday, April 26 with a full house of vendors who have been spending days cleaning, improving, and restocking all their booths for the big day.
Twenty-seven years ago, the very first building of The Windmill rose in what was just a brush lot the week before. Conceived as a partnership between the commercial and agricultural economies of the region, it was built by a similar partnership between the growing Mennonite and the established “English” communities.
The Windmill first opened with 64 vendors in two buildings and 25 vendors outdoors. Today, The Windmill is approaching 200 vendors and attracts an average of 8,000-10,000 customers and visitors to Yates County every Saturday. The current manager, Lauren Welch, is looking forward to his eighth season at the wheel. He describes the business philosophy for the market as “making what we’ve got the best we can.” Two improvements he hopes to see soon are installing solar panels for electric power and high speed public Wi-Fi connections.
Nine new vendors are joining The Windmill cooperative at the beginning of this season, and they are as varied as the rest.
• Apartment 7L (formerly Sue’s Unique Boutique) - Vintage clothing and accessories by Mallory Morse.
• Arnold Brigham Woodworking – Woodcraft items.
• Baby Cakes - Donna Henderson’s cupcakes and cakes made from premium local ingredients.
• Genundewah Uniforms – Medical and emergency duty uniforms and shoes from Jeff Blodgett’s shop in Canandaigua.
• Knit n’ Knots - knitting and sewing supplies by Marie Hanson.
• The Pierogie Guy - Assorted frozen Polish dumplings to cook at home, by Kelly Lewis.
• Oak Grove Woodworking – Furniture and woodworking by Samuel Zimmerman.
• Unforgettable Gifts – Alpaca products by Janet Griffin.
• Winethings – Antiques and wine related merchandise.
The 2014 Windmill season continues through the second Saturday of December plus Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day. Hours of operation are from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Special events, including two custom and classic car shows will be held this season as in the past.
• Spring Windmill Custom & Classic Car Show May 10
• Fall Windmill Custom & Classic Car Show Oct. 11