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.
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!