From the Worthington Partnership:
The Worthington Partnership, the parent organization of the Worthington Farmers Market, has spent a great deal of time and energy working to keep the market running throughout the pandemic. We are thrilled to announce that starting Saturday, May 1, we will host the Worthington Farmers Market outside in the Worthington Historic District.
Partnership staff has been working hard to develop a sensible plan to host a walk-up market in the historic district and has received approval for this plan from the City of Columbus Department of Health and the City of Worthington. However, we must follow the safety protocols outlined in the approved plan. Please note that this means that all is NOT quite back to “normal” for the upcoming outdoor season.
Below we have outlined how the market will look different than seasons past. Our goal is to add space to spread out the market vendors and customers, so that social distance can be maintained.
Space has been added for booths along the Village Green south of 161, as well as additional booths placed on the lawn of the United Methodist Church.
E. New England Avenue between the Graeter’s parking lot and Dewey’s Pizza property will be closed to allow for more spacing between booths.
Masks will be required for vendors and customers, as the ordinance for Worthington is still in effect. Please be an example to others and wear your mask!
Many vendors will be in new spaces this season. Spacing is the main factor and we have been thoughtful in placement to ensure social distancing and customer queuing can be accommodated.
Hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout the market.
Last year when the pandemic hit and most activities and shops were shuttered, The Partnership quickly pivoted to a pre-order, drive-through pick-up market to serve our customers. As the pandemic continued, we fine-tuned our operation and eventually moved to a controlled walk-up market in a parking lot.
“We have a duty both to our producers and to our customers to host the market to bring locally sourced food to the community. During the pandemic, our staff has done everything possible to create a safe environment and develop a trusted relationship with Columbus Public Health. Now, we are encouraged to have a plan to return the market to its home in the Worthington Historic District,” said Annina Parini, executive director of The Worthington Partnership.
Rules governing the safe operations of farmers markets during the pandemic are set by the Ohio Department of Health and Ohio Department of Agriculture. These rules are enforced locally by Columbus Public Health (CPH); in fact, each week the Worthington Farmers Market is inspected by CPH.
“Bringing the Farmers Market back to the Historic District will bring a big boost to our small locally owned businesses,” said Matt Greeson, Worthington City Manager. “We are grateful to the Partnership for their diligent work with public health partners to develop a plan that brings the Market back to its historic home, supports small businesses, and provides a safe shopping experience for visitors and vendors.”
The Worthington Partnership, a 501(c)(3), has a small staff and a modest budget. We rely on many volunteers to provide support personnel to make our market the biggest and best in central Ohio, in addition to running many other events and projects we take on. If you would like to join our efforts, we always are in need of hard-working volunteers.
We appreciate your continued support of the Worthington Farmers Market. Until May 1, you can visit us at our indoor location at The Shops at Worthington Place, 7227 N. High St. on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon.