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Farmer's Market Opens Despite Stormy Weather

Fresh spring vegetables grown in Columbus County were for sale at the Columbus County Community Farmers Market Saturday in not very spring-like weather as area produce growers began their summer sales season.

The rainy, windy weather undoubtedly cut down on the number of customers and vendors who normally show up on market days each Saturday during the spring vegetable season but despite the unfavorable conditions there were a few spring vegetables and numerous crafts and baked goods, along with needlework, for sale.

The usual opening day ceremonies took place despite the unpleasant weather. Whiteville Boy Scouts handled the flag-raising ceremony and the Edgewood Elementary School chorus, directed and accompanied by music teacher Gus Cothen, performed several numbers.

Market President Irvin Brown welcomed the crowd. County Commissioner Amon McKenzie told the market vendors, “I’m proud to be here to tell you that we appreciate your good work.”

N.C. House Representative Ken Waddell said, pointing to the light rain falling, “It’s a good day.”

He complimented the vendors and added, “For what you are doing.”

Vegetable offerings were scant on the opening day, as the late spring delayed the ripening of some crops.

A total of eight vendors, most of them selling fancy needlework, preserves, and a wide assortment of baked goods, were on hand and making sales. There were a few vegetables on display, including locally produced beets, carrots, white potatoes, kohlrabi, garden peas, greens, eggs, cut flowers, ornamental plants, plus homemade breads, cakes and cookies.

Market Manager Carol Shuman said that thus far this season, about 12 vendors have signed up to take part in the sales and more are expected as spring and summer vegetables continue to ripen.

“We’re expecting more vendors as the season progresses,” she said.

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