HELENA — A Saturday downtown farmers market is starting in Helena on Saturday, September 5.
The new Meadowlark Farmers Market is in a new location, the Helena Chamber of Commerce parking lot at the corner of Sixth Avenue and Cruse Avenue.
It’s modeled after the Tuesday Capitol Square Farmers Market, with some pedestrian traffic, plus some drive-through shopping, said co-organizer/market manager Micah Eller.
Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., with the market running every Saturday, through Oct. 31.
The market’s plan to meet COVID-19 health regulations has been approved by the Lewis and Clark County Health Department, said Eller. The market has also secured insurance and a nonprofit sponsor, Lost & Foundation.
“Everything’s set in place,” Eller said, “but we need volunteers for the coming weeks.” Volunteers can sign up by emailing email@example.com.
From 8:30 to 10:00 a.m., the market will be drive-through only, she said.
From 10 a.m. to 1:00 pm. it will switch to walk-through, until it reaches 250 people. If it does reach 250, it will switch back to drive-through only.
Cars will enter the market on Sixth Avenue and vendors will be set up on the driver’s side of the car to provide easy customer service.
All attendees and vendors are required to wear face masks and to maintain social distancing.
“Please only come if you are planning on shopping,” said Eller, who also asked that people keep their pets at home.
The market will have about a dozen vendors on Saturday, said co-organizer/market manager Kate McLean.
Due to the attendee limit being set at 250 people, organizers are asking that people who plan on attending shop with intention.
“We’re keeping vendor fees low because we know a lot of them have missed out on income this season from missing markets and the COVID situation,” said McLean. “We do ask that you shop with intention. We want to make all of those attendees count for helping out our local economy.”
Organizers are intentionally keeping the market small in order to keep attendance numbers (including vendors) under 250.
“The market emphasis is on perishable products,” said Eller, which includes meats, vegetables, eggs and fruit, as well as some baked goods. “We’re big advocates of local food and want to ensure farmers can get perishable products to market.”
Micah Eller is the founder and lead organizer of the annual Meadowlark Music Festival.
“The Meadowlark Festival is not able to hold a music festival this year, but we still wanted to give back to the community. It’s part of our mission to not only support music but also local food and vendors.”
Meadowlark Market is also recruiting food trucks, which will be parked outside the market on Cruse Avenue.
A port-a-potty and sanitizing station will also be available..
The Meadowlark Farmers Market is not affiliated with the Helena Farmers Market.
For more information, visit Meadowlark Farmers Market Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/events/2337561089819118/ [facebook.com]or email firstname.lastname@example.org or look for them at Instagram (@meadowlarkmusic).