Farmers Market Starts

The buzz has started.

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The buzz has started.

“So many friends in Phoenix are asking when Payson’s Farmers Market will open,” said Katie Klein one of the new partners of the organization.

Katie and her husband Joe have joined with John and Lorian Roethlein, the original founders, to expand the market.

“The four of us have the capacity to do more,” said John.

The two couples plan to open the market on Memorial Day weekend with new vendors and attractions.

This year, organizers want to make the Farmers Market family friendly. They have mini-horses lined up to give kids rides every week. At the stage area, they plan a water table with numerous activities for the kids to do while their parents relax, have a coffee and watch the musicians.

“Kids will drag their parents out of bed if they’re excited about something,” said Katie. She and her husband Joe have two children under 10-years old.

Each week will showcase a musician playing original tunes.

“We’ve decided we want original music, instead of having musicians straight up play someone else’s music,” said John.

Local farmers, such as Toad’s Farm in Tonto Basin and the Wagon Wheel farm from Payson, have decided to step up their game this year to commit to run a booth every week.

The Kleins and Roethleins have also invited farmers who have acreage across the state to participate as vendors to keep the amount of fresh produce varied and sustained.

For local growers who wish to sell their excess fruits and veggies without the weekly commitment of a booth, the Farmers Market offers its Co-op table again this year.

The Co-op table costs $5.00 and five percent of sales to the market for the use of the space. Everything else can be sold for a profit, said Katie.

“It’s helpful to email each week to tell us you plan on coming (to the Co-op table),” said Lorian.

The Payson Farmers Market has established itself over the last three years, as a gathering place for the community.

In fact, the mission of the Payson Farmers Market “is a gathering place for people to experience fun, friendship, and the joy of community from fresh local food, live entertainment, and Rim Country art.

The Roethleins have sat as hosts of the market since it started four years ago. Now that their consulting business of finding engineers for Silicon Valley has picked up again, they reached out to the Kleins to help co-manage the market.

Katie and her mother, (the owner of Rim Country Jams), have plied their wares from a booth at the market for a couple of years. Katie will oversee management duties.

Already, she has added more vendors, brainstormed the kid activities, and suggested to vendors ways to keep their customers returning, such as acknowledging names and faces and suggesting recipes for products customers buy.

Katie’s husband, Joe, owns an on-line marketing company and has taken over much of the promotion of the market. He has revamped the Facebook page and overhauled the webpage. He hopes to introduce more Valley residents to the joys of visiting the Payson Farmers Market.

“It’s the town center every Saturday morning,” said John.

The Payson Farmers Market is open every Saturday, starting on May 26, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Follow market news on Facebook: http://www.facebook .com/PaysonFarmersMarket?ref=ts

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