Road closure in Cedar City for Farmers’ Market during construction of new ‘downtown destination’ – St George News

CEDAR TOWN — The Festival City Farmers Market in Cedar City is temporarily moving while a new “downtown destination” plaza is being built.

Festival City Market, Cedar City, Utah, June 11, 2022 | Photo by Alysha Lundgren, Cedar City News

On June 8, Cedar City Council unanimously approved the closure of 100 West Center Street at Shakespeare Lane on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for the Farmers’ Market.

Currently, the market is located at 45 West Center Street and is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. While the group is expected to move after July 4, the actual date is still up in the air, said Heather Carter, who owns the market and Nature Hills Farm.

The relocation was prompted by upcoming construction on the land where the market currently stands and the market will move shortly before construction begins, Carter said. The organizers are also working on logistical tasks, such as securing storage and planning a new layout.

The plan is to build a public plaza that can be used for events, said Steve Nelson, owner of the current market space and real estate broker for Stratum Real Estate Group. The project is still conceptual but the plan is to build a building inspired by the Hotel Escalante which will serve as accommodation above and a restaurant below.

Sunny Days and Doodles (front) and Sara Greene (rear) at Festival City Market, Cedar City, Utah, June 11, 2022 | Photo by Alysha Lundgren, Cedar City News

“It will be a cool historic building,” he said.

The space will also be fitted out and equipped with terraces. They plan to build a porch outside the restaurant that will act as a stage, Nelson said, adding that the plan is to create a program of events to create a “cool hangout” where tourists can find good food. food and entertainment.

“So it will be a downtown destination spot when people are looking for something to do on the weekends,” he said.

Once construction is complete, the market will likely return to the upgraded plaza, depending on all vendors agreeing, Carter said. Currently, up to 40 vendors fill the space and nearly 100 vendors are selling in the market, but not at the same time, she noted.

Work with the city council

Lindy’s Farm Stand at Festival City Market, Cedar City, Utah, June 11, 2022 | Photo by Alysha Lundgren, Cedar City News

The road closure was first requested in May municipal Council meeting, and council member Tyler Melling said he couldn’t think of a better reason to close a road.

To gain approval, organizers were asked to contact relevant businesses to ensure people living or working in the area would retain access to necessary entrances and exits. The market has purchased liability insurance and worked with the Cedar City Police Department to mitigate security issues.

Police Chief Darin Adams said the department was not in opposition but would demand the market close the road. Additionally, the location is spacious enough to allow emergency responders to move around the barricades if necessary.

Festival Town Farmers Market

The year-round farmers’ market began in 2011 and Carter said it was the first of its kind in Utah and remains open 50 weeks a year in rain, wind and snow , because the number of sellers has become too large for the group to be facilitated. on the inside. She said the marketplace has been a success and has changed the way sellers can run their businesses, transforming work from a hobby or part-time job to a career.

Marigold Gardens at Festival City Market, Cedar City, Utah, June 11, 2022 | Photo by Alysha Lundgren, Cedar City News

The community greatly benefits from the homemade and local products available, including produce, baked goods, honey, meat and crafts, Carter said, adding that it was not a market. of resale.

“Come visit – buy something,” she said. “We have live music every week and it’s a great place to hang out.”

Over the past three to four years, the market has grown tremendously, but its growth has accelerated in 2020 due to COVID-19. As events were canceled and vendors ran out of venues to rely on, market organizers decided to allow more artisans to participate, Carter said.

“We thought it would help them since we didn’t have to shut down,” she said. “It was a great addition since people were attending the farmers market in Nevada and California in droves.”

Mountain Magik products at Festival City Market, Cedar City, Utah, June 11, 2022 | Photo by Alysha Lundgren, Cedar City News

The organization constantly faces ups and downs; However, Carter said between 800 and 1,200 people visit the market each week, which is both challenging and beneficial for vendors and customers.

“Some years we don’t have as much customer support and when we don’t have customers we lose suppliers and they go along,” she said. “It’s always difficult to get farmers to market. It’s just a lot of work to attend a market and the farmers get tired.

The market is currently accepting all farmers. Some craft vendors can also participate, but Carter said they only allow a certain number per category.

Interested persons can apply on the Festival City Farmers Market Facebook pagewhere individuals can also find out more and keep up to date with their move.

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James V. Payne