The area’s longest running farmers’ market will open for its 41st season Saturday May 27, on the sidewalk of Main Street in downtown Penn Yan.
The Yates County Cooperative Farm and Craft Market, more commonly known as the Penn Yan Market, sells only locally grown produce and locally made foods and crafts: everything at this market’s grown or made in Yates or an immediately adjacent county. At least 80 percent of what’s on each stand must be produced by the vendor: so customers know they can talk with the people who grew or made the product.
Customers come not only for the produce and crafts, but also to visit with each other as well as with the vendors. The market is known for its friendly community spirit. Many also stop to shop at the many locally owned and staffed stores in the historic business district, and get breakfast or lunch at one of the downtown restaurants.
The mix of products is a little different every week, as both farmers and crafters bring different items through the season; and a little different every year, as new vendors join and occasionally older ones retire.
In 2017, the market is expecting a new soap vendor, and also an apiary bringing honey, beeswax, and candles; as well as multiple flower vendors, bakers, produce growers, and crafters. Some have been coming for years; for others it’s their first season.
The market is held rain or shine; vendors’ tents and shop awnings provide shelter if needed. The displays start with early produce—asparagus, greens, and other early crops; flowers and hanging baskets; baked goods and craft vendors. As the season continues and more crops ripen, additional vendors join in, until the market fills the block between Elm Street and Jacob; and possibly continues around the corner, towards the large free parking lot behind the Main Street buildings.