There’s a meeting scheduled for October 21 to discuss planning the 2016 Devon Community Market. It’s been a failure for the past three years, and is past the point where any fixes would help. The best solution is to scrap it and create the true Farmers Market the neighborhood wants.
Everything about the Market’s current incarnation is wrong: the concept, the name, and the location.
It’s an affront to the residents of West Ridge, who have been vocal in their demand for a true farmers market, and have shown their distaste for the Devon Community Market by shunning it.
It’s unfair to the vendors, who discover that there are no customers and therefore no money to be made. Many show up once and never return, and a good number of them migrate to true farmers markets in other neighborhoods where they are successful. The word is out: The Devon Community Market is bad for vendors, and that makes recruitment harder.
Other diverse neighborhoods enthusiastically support farmers markets, in Rogers Park, Edgewater, and Andersonville, for example. Why should West Ridge be any different? The Devon Community Market was designed to support local merchants on Devon, virtually none of whom have supported the Market in return (exceptions being Ted’s Market in 2013 and Europrint Imports [cell phones] in 2015).
My next few posts will detail both problems and potential solutions for a true farmers market in West Ridge.
The meeting is scheduled for Devon Bank on October 21 at 6:30 p.m. It’s sponsored by the West Ridge Chamber of Commerce.