Gulfport Farmer's Market moves to new location - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Gulfport Farmer's Market moves to new location

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

By Jessica Bowman – email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Beginning Tuesday, the Farmer's Market in Gulfport will have a new temporary home. Right now, the market is operating in the downtown area. But next week fresh produce will be sold next to the old Gulfport library.

City officials believe it will be the perfect location for the summer season because vendors will be visible to hundreds of drivers along Highway 90.

The vacant limestone covered area sitting north of Highway 90 and Jones Park will soon be home to an array of colorful fruits and vegetables that farmers will be selling.

"We want to get them in a spot where they can be seen," Gulfport City Spokesman Ryan LaFontaine said. "They benefited for many years right here in the park, right next to 90, everybody would pass saw them."

It's the market's second move since the rebuilding project at Jones Park began.

"When construction started in the park, we tried to shuffle them around, the farmers, to make room for the construction. But it wasn't working as well as we liked," LaFontaine said.

The city then made arrangements for farmers to sell their fresh produce in the downtown area at the train depot, which is located next to Hancock Bank. But limited parking proved to be a problem.

"Now with the summer months upon us and we expect a slight up tick in the numbers of vendors and farmers that we're going to have, and so parking could become a problem. So we decided this might be the best fit here at the old library site."

Customers and vendors will be able to use the entire parking lot that sits on the west side of the old library. But more parking spaces won't be the only perk to the new location off Highway 90 and 20th Avenue.

"They're under these big oak trees, they'll have shade, they'll have visibility from Highway 90 and they'll be right next to the park." 

LaFontaine said once work is completed at Jones Park, the city's plan is to place the Farmer's Market back at the park under a newly built pavilion.

The market will open in its new location Tuesday beginning at 5am until sunset.

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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