Monday, January 25, 2010

Birth of a Farmer's Market

On Thursday, January 21st, Hawai'i island got a new Farmer's Market! This is a good thing for the community and the island. The small village of Pepeekeo on the Hamakua Coast opened their new market with a blessing by Reverend Baron Kimura of the Tenrikyo Kaka'ako Church. About 80 people from the community attended the opening.

Matthew Pritchard-Tage (above) is the owner of the 1.6 acres on Highway 19 where the market is being held on Thursdays from noon till dusk and Sundays from dawn till 2 pm.

Tom Lackey's Huli Huli Chicken was the star of the day and there were long lines waiting for the chicken to finish cooking. We took one home and it was succulent and delicious. Also at the oepning was Bob Ferazzi's  Make'a Nursery  selling young healthy vegetable and herb plants 3 for $2. We bought some purple tomatillos and hot peppers from them and I plan on going back again to get some more starts.

There was shave ice of course, what Hawaiian event does not have shave ice and huli huli chicken? A fruit and vegetable vendor had her hands full keeping up with her orders, there is certainly a need for more vendors to meet the demand.

The mayor sent an emissary to speak to the crowd on his behalf. Public Information Specialist Desiree Cruz thanked the vendors and customers for supporting the market and talked about the importance of community support and fresh local foods.

County Councilman & local grocer Dominc Yagong spoke at length with enthusiasm about how important farmer's markets are to the people of Hawaii and how we are so fortunate to have so many things growing locally. He emphasized that it is not just the marketing that is important, but also a chance to talk story with friends and neighbors in a way that builds community.

It will be great to see this market grow and to see how it provides a service to the people of the Hamakua Coast. If you are interested in a spot at the market, each 10' X 10' space rents for $15. Produce vendors, food vendors and artists are needed to grow this market.  See you in Pepeekeo!


noel said...

love the farmers market sign...yum huli huli there any more leftovers and does it come with two scoups?

nice post :)

Devany said...

No leftovers and no scoops. Tom sells his chickens whole.

Cloudia said...

Boy, that IS the Big Island!
Your Mayor Billy seems cool. Congrats on your new market! Aloha-

Aloha, Friend!

Comfort Spiral

Cynthia Hoskins said...

Great post Devany! I wanted to stop for a photo of the new sign when I saw it last week. Will pass along your link instead!

Frederick said...

Dear Matthew.
So glad to see your market up and running. Looks like you are off to a great start. It was a pleasure to meet you and to stay at your place at The Falls.
Fred, Fey, Jr, Liz and Calvin

Debbie said...

I'm so excited about this new Farmers Market! I'm coming to Hilo to visit and I'm happy I get to visit this wonderful market on Sunday! Especially Sun Jan 31, because it's my birthday! What a great BD gift!
Debbie(How do you say Debbie in Hawaiian?)

Shelli Lether said...

I am sooo proud and impressed with Shaun and Matthew. This is another example of their huge heart, desire to do good for those around them, and their fun creativity. I can't wait to come back to the island just for this. I look forward to all the good food, picking out some fresh flowers, and getting all my kids faces painted.

Thank you Matthew and Shaun for your blessings.
Shelli Lawerence

Tim said...

Congratulations from the South Kona Green Market - - on your great beginning! It is wonderful to see more folks supporting the most local of economies!

Devany said...

Hey Tim, I am going to have to make a trip over there. I love Green Markets! 100% local?

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