The Windmill Farm and Craft Market, one of the Finger Lakes’ premier tourist destinations, has pushed back its opening date for the 2020 season to Memorial Day weekend.
“We are anticipating the first day of the market will be May 23,” said Windmill Operations Manager Steve Wilson, adding, “Believe me, we are anxious to reopen!”
The market, which is beginning its 33rd year, usually opens the last Saturday of April. Located at the top of the hill on Route 14A between Penn Yan and Dundee, the Windmill attracts thousands of visitors from near and far who come to spend the day. They shop from the myriad of vendors who sell fruits and vegetables, cheese, baked goods, plants, crafts, beer and wine, clothing, shoes, furniture, antiques, collectibles, food to eat on premises, and many other items.
But the Covid-19 virus, as it has for so many businesses, caused substantial disruptions for the Windmill and its more than 200 vendors. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, by executive order, has instructed non-essential businesses to close and people to stay at home, or practice social distancing if they have to go out. All of that impacts the Windmill; hence the decision to delay the opening.
“The health, safety and well-being of our staff, vendors and visitors is our utmost concern,” said Mary Record, the president of the market’s board of directors. “We are looking forward to and preparing for the opening on Memorial Day, when we hope that Covid-19 will no longer be a factor.”
One of Yates County’s largest attractions, the Windmill Farm and Craft Market hosts many events—car shows, tractor shows, a children’s Halloween parade and fundraisers for local charities throughout the season, which this year will run through the end of November.
In addition to its regular Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., the market will be open those hours on Memorial Day, Monday, May 25; Independence Day, July 4; Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 7; Columbus Day, Monday, Oct. 12; and “Black Friday,” Nov. 27. The last day of the market for the season will be Saturday, Nov. 28.
“We have been immensely blessed in these United States. It is gratifying to see all of us joining together in a common cause. Nearly everyone has been adversely impacted by this heartbreaking pandemic.” Wilson said. “I know that all of us are eager to welcome customers, new and old, back to the Windmill, but only when it is the right time to do so. Stay healthy and be at peace.”