City Market – Fresh, Local, Handmade
by Sarah Cook, Community Programs Coordinator City of Auburn
May 5, 2022
Fresh, local and handmade are the core values of City Market, Auburn's farmers market that takes place every Saturday morning in the summer.
The City Market development process began in the spring of 2019. A Saturday farmers market was a goal for the City of Auburn's Park and Recreation department and a community want/need. What started as something many believed to be an easy task turned out to be a huge learning curve for the City Market staff. Creating a name, picking a location, and securing vendors took months of work and input from staff and the community. Location, location, location, what many think should be an easy decision, was a huge hurdle. After many conversations, we decided on Town Creek Park.
Town Creek Park has turned out to be the perfect spot for City Market. Town Creek Park is a mile from downtown Auburn and has the ideal landscape for a market. Some vendors might argue that it needs more shade, but otherwise, it is almost perfect. After months of prepping and planning, our first market started in October 2019. After four successful markets, we decided to move our market to a summer market beginning in May 2020.
Like many others, COVID – 19 changed our plans. In April 2020, we did a curbside farmers market. Our curbside farmers market brought our community together and gave our citizens something to look forward to. It was a vast accomplishment and wouldn't have been possible without our whole parks and recreation staff and local farmers. In June 2020, our traditional farmers market began, and we are now heading into our third market season.
A significant aspect of our market is social media. When we first formulated the idea of the market, we knew that we wanted to have a large social media presence. We believe that it is crucial to bring awareness to our market, specifically the vendors. Social media is a way for the community to connect with local vendors, artisans and bakers.
We currently use Facebook & Instagram and do a weekly newsletter during market season. Overall, we have seen success from our social media accounts and recommend social media to any other market. This past market season, we began incorporating live music into our markets to add to the market atmosphere. This year our main objective is to add more elements for families and local nonprofits. We hope to highlight a local non–profit at each market this summer and incorporate activities for families. These activities will include face painters, arts & crafts, inflatables, etc.
Our local beautification council also holds their yearly plant sale at the market. We are always looking for ways to draw more community members out. The more community members that attend our market, the more exposure our vendors receive.
City Market's focus is to bring fresh, local, and handmade foods and products to the Auburn area, which would not be possible without the dedication and willingness of our excellent vendors.
Our goal every Saturday is to create a space that focuses on our community and the people within it, and in return, the people of Auburn have shown us tremendous support. So if you are in Auburn this summer, be sure to stop by Town Creek Park one Saturday from 8:00 A.M. to 11:00 A.M.