The Princeton Farmers’ Market will kick off its summer season this Thursday, May 28, at its new location in the Franklin Avenue parking lot. Town officials approved the opening mid-week last week. The market will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.with safety guidelines developed in collaboration with the Princeton Health Department. Guidelines will be updated regularly on the Princeton Farmers’ Market website.
The West Windsor Farmers’ Market had a successful opening two weeks ago and showed that outdoor markets can be practice social distancing protocols.
Masks will be required for all market shoppers and vendors at the Princeton Farmers’ Market, and shoppers are encouraged to pre-order and prepay online with vendors who offer this. Six-foot social distancing is mandatory, and tape or chalk marks will be used to mark lines. Card payment is recommended for in-person purchases. Vendors will handle all produce and products. The market is also asking customers not to attend if they are feeling sick, to limit shopping time to less than 30 minutes, and to limit groups to one or two shoppers.
The new location was chosen to give both customers and vendors more space. Customers will enter the market area from the east end near Jefferson Road, and exit on the west end. The intention is to create a one-directional stream of traffic. Parking is available along Franklin Avenue and Witherspoon Street.
Market manager Max Hoagland plans to continually adjust protocols over the course season in coordination with town and state rules.
Typically, the summer market begins about two weeks earlier, but Hoagland isn’t concerned about the delayed start date this year. The extra time was necessary to develop plans with the local health department, and vendors wanted the delay as well.
“Some didn’t feel comfortable selling yet, people were stretched too thin, or couldn’t get the ingredients they needed,” Hoagland said in an interview with Planet Princeton on Tuesday. He anticipates that additional vendors will join the market over the course of the season.
The Princeton Farmers’ Market accepts SNAP, and matches up to $10 per customer per market day. Hoagland will be at the market with an EBT card terminal to assist customers.
“I encourage people who are eligible to reach out via email to clear up any questions. We would love to see more people utilize [our market-match],” he said. Questions can be emailed to email@example.com.
As of now, the market is set to run through November 19, its usual end date.