The Grand Prairie Farmers Market opened its season on Saturday; ‘Double Up Food Bucks’ program will match fruit and vegetable purchases for SNAP users

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The Grand Prairie Farmer’s Market is open every Saturday and Thursday and offers homemade produce and local produce. (Photo by Melissa Cason)
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The Stuttgart Chamber of Commerce’s Grand Prairie Farmers Market opened for the season on Saturday, offering baked goods, wood products, leather goods, soaps and other unique homemade items.

Stephanie Teer, market chair of the Stuttgart Chamber of Commerce, said this year’s farmers’ market has so far had 17 vendors, offering a variety of handmade items such as model mugs, leather goods, paracord goods, homemade soaps, handmade jewelry, homemade soy candles. , homemade bread, vegetables and fruits.

The Grand Prairie Farmer’s Market in Stuttgart is open every Saturday morning and Thursday afternoon until October 29. These mugs by (LR) Stacy Smith and Paige Culpepper of Woodpepper Custom Designs are hand decorated and take an average of about three weeks to complete. (Photo by Melissa Cason)
(LR) Catriona Oltmann and Katie McEntire buy homemade bread from Misha Murphy of Misha’s Family Bakery, a vendor at Grand Prairie Farmers Market. (Photo by Melissa Cason)

Saturday’s farmer’s market did not yet feature vegetables, and Teer said she expects fruits and vegetables to start arriving at any time.

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“We are going to have fruits and vegetables here, but they are not ready yet,” she explained. “We will have many more items over time.”

Teer said the Farmers Market is accepting SNAP cards this year.

“This is the first year we’ve accepted SNAP cards,” she said. “We also participate in the ‘Double Up Food Bucks’ program.”

Teer said the “Double Up Food Bucks” program allows a shopper to double their food buying power at the farmer’s market.

“When shoppers use their SNAP card to buy produce at the farmer’s market, the customer gets back half of the money spent on produce to buy other things at the farmer’s market,” Teer explained. “It’s like doubling your SNAP benefits.”

She said shoppers who participate in the “double-up” program receive coins equal to half of the fruit and vegetable purchase. At the end of the day, Teer collects the food dollars and writes a check to the vendor for the amount of food dollars he collects.

“It’s another way to help families extend their SNAP benefits,” Teer said.

She said there were still spots available at the Farmers Market for anyone who wanted to sell their Arkansas-made items. The cost is $50 for the entire season, lasting from today through October.

“With 26 Saturdays between now and October, it’s like paying $2 a day,” Teer said.

The Grand Prairie Farmers’ Market is open at 507 S. Main St. from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. or until supplies sell out every Saturday and Thursday from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

James V. Payne