The downtown Sarasota Farmers Market.

The board of the Sarasota Farmers Market recently voted to cease all market operations, a move that has led to the layoff of two employees, the closure of the market's office and an end to social media posts from the market.

The market, which typically sets up in downtown Sarasota every Saturday morning, was closed last month because of the COVID-19 pandemic. A number of vendors have since been forced to find alternative ways to sell their goods, and the market had been using its social media presence to promote those efforts.

Phil Pagano

Image: Robert Castro

"I'm sure the board is up against some tough decisions, but I wish they had given me a little more time, as I have our accountant working on a number of stimulus packages and other funding that will be coming in," said Phil Pagano, the market's executive director, according to a press release.

The downtown market was founded in 1979 and has been a mainstay of Sarasota weekends ever since.

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