By Tracy McNew
It’s that season again. As we welcome the warm temperatures and budding trees we can also embrace the return of local outdoor events.
A staple outdoor event for Libby is the Farmer’s Market which is held every week from the second Thursday in May until the first Thursday in October.
Juanita Schikora volunteers as the Market Master, and has been coordinating the Libby Farmer’s Market for about 15 years. She works with volunteer Helen Tarbert who takes over as Market Master when Juanita isn’t available.
The market will open for the summer this week on Thursday, May 10. The hours are from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m., and the market is located in the parking lot between the Libby Chamber of Commerce and Fireman’s Park.
The Farmer’s Market moved to its current location about thirteen years ago. It takes place on Thursdays for the sake of convenience to the volunteers coordinating it, and things aren’t likely to change anytime soon, said Schikora.
We’re happy with the time and location. On an average week, there are about 17 vendors set up and seven of them are produce vendors, she said. “I don’t allow yard sale items, and at least 60% of each table is hand crafted items with the exception of those selling products like Tupperware or Avon.”
It only costs $30 to set up a booth at the Farmer’s Market which evens out to about $1 per week. Nonprofits don’t pay anything after June, and if a vendor would like to set up for an individual week, the cost is only $10. Anyone interested in setting up a booth can contact Schikora 334-3619.
Schikora donates all proceeds earned from the Farmer’s Market to help other organizations in the area. Last year, money was donated to the Food Pantry, the VFW Ladies Auxiliary, the Community Thrift Store, and to a Christmas program in Troy, she said.
Schikora also coordinates two other shopping events to collect donations for the school. The Fall Fest and Christmas Bazaar are both held at Asa Wood. The Fall Fest is held during the second week of November, and the Christmas Bazaar is held during the second week of December. These events usually attract more vendors and the cost to participate with a booth is $25.
Farmer’s Market events are intended to be a community service, and everyone is invited to attend. There is even a grill set up during the Thursday markets so that shoppers can grab a bite to eat while they enjoy the warm weather and peruse the market’s weekly offerings.