Organizers of the Northampton Farmer’s Market appeared before the Northampton Borough Council on Thursday, February 21 to outline plans for the annual market, which starts on May 14.
Victor Rodite, a community planner who has managed the farmer’s market, will be stepping down.
“I am ready to pass it on,” he told council.
However, he has worked closely with future manager Patricia Knauff to ensure the market continues to grow and prosper.
Together, they worked with 12 Northampton Area High School marketing and DECA students to put together a marketing plan for the farmer’s market. Students suggested logos and branding, social media strategy, grassroots efforts, and special promotions. Rodite said that eight students have expressed interest in continuing to work with the market as interns.
The ultimate goal, said Rodite, is to increase the market’s attendance. If attendance is low, old vendors may not return and new vendors will not sign on.
He called it a “chicken and egg” problem. Attendance can only grow if there are quality vendors, but quality vendors will not join the market if attendance is low.
Knauff said one solution students recommended is making the market “a gathering place.” She said there is the possibility for student bands to perform, for wine tasting and breweries, for different theme nights, and even for children’s activities.
Councilmembers were enthusiastic about these changes.
“We are very glad you have moved it to the point it is at now,” said Councilman Anthony Lopsonzski, Sr.