Farmers market

The Hopkinsville-Christian County Downtown Farmers Market will host a night market on Thursday evenings this year, starting April 23.

Hours will be from 3 to 7:30 p.m. each Thursday at Founders Square.

Market manager Laura Faulkner said the goal is to include more handcrafted vendors at the farmers market.

“We’re really trying to establish a handcrafted, handmade vendor population, so I kind of think a night market is essential to that,” Faulker said. “A lot of individuals who do handcrafted, it’s a second job for them, and having the market 7-to-1 during the week doesn’t really accommodate someone with a full-time job.”

Along with new vendors, Faulkner hopes to attract more people to shop there.

“Night markets have really helped evolve your farmers markets into places where you could go get gifts,” she said. “We’re trying to expand that opinion and that thought.”

Faulkner said discussions are ongoing about hosting a bigger event each month at the night market.

“We’ve talked about having some food trucks and some type of performance at the event,” she said.

Downtown Renaissance Director Holly Boggess said this won’t be the first series of night markets hosted at the Downtown Farmers Market. The city tried it in 2010 as a pilot program.

“After that year, some of the vendors moved elsewhere, and we lost some of our momentum,” she said. “We have over the past several years talked about bringing the night market back, and the vendors talked about it amongst themselves and decided they wanted to commit to it.”

Boggess said she thinks by adding more variety, the market will be a “great cultural experience.”

“We know we’re not reaching a segment of the population,” she said. “This will give us an opportunity to reach people who work different shifts, and even those who don’t get off until 5 p.m. and don’t have the opportunity to come during the day. We just couldn’t be more excited.”

Faulkner said applications to vend at the night market will be available early March. The membership fee is $25 for one-day participation or $50 for multiple dates.

Vendors will be required to have some Kentucky Proud component in the items they sell, Faulkner noted.

Kentucky Proud is the official state marketing program for agricultural products. There is no charge to join.

For more information about the night market or Kentucky Proud, contact Faulkner at 270-887-4285 or lfaulkner@comdev-services.com.

Reach Zirconia Alleyne at 270-887-3243 or zalleyne@kentuckynewera.com.

Reach Zirconia Alleyne at 270-887-3243 or zalleyne@kentuckynewera.com.

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