After having its spring season cut short because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Bradenton Farmers' Market will return to downtown Bradenton this Saturday with a new layout, more vendors and a number of new rules to keep customers safe.
In addition to setting up along Old Main Street, as they have for years, vendors this year will also occupy space on Third Avenue and Fourth Avenue. Morgan Bettes, the new manager for the farmers' market, says the market has seen a surge of new applications from people hoping to join the market.
"We have a bunch of new vendors this year, which is really cool," Bettes says. "We have a lot of the old favorites, like Milagros Produce and Yum Yum Tree Produce and Pure Florida Honey Company, but then we have some new guys like La Mucca Ballerina, which is an Italian family-owned company out of Sarasota. A lot of new faces are joining our old faces and rounding out our farmers' market this year."
Still, the coronavirus has caused the market to reduce some of its offerings. There will be no chef demos, no free samples from vendors and no kids' activities, but live music will remain a constant. "There will still be the sounds of a farmers' market, but just maybe not some of the hustle and bustle," Bettes says.
Vendors and market staff will be required to wear masks. Customers are "strongly encouraged" to wear masks, but they will not be required. "It keeps our community safe and it keeps our vendors safe, as well as our market team, so we're asking guests to please wear a mask for safety," Bettes says.
The Bradenton Farmers' Market runs 9 a.m.-2 p.m. every Saturday from October through May, and is located along Old Main Street and on nearby streets in downtown Bradenton. For more info, visit the market's website.