WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — Farmers market season in the North Country is coming to an end and local markets are celebrating a successful year.
After being open every Wednesday since the end of May, the Watertown Farm and Craft Market closed out its 2021 season on October 6.
This weekly market is known for drawing crowds stretching from the Dulles State Office Building on Washington Street to the foot of Watertown’s Public Square. As the market, customers stand in line for fresh produce, homemade crafts and sweet treats, while listening to live music.
Reflecting on the 2021 season, Greater North Country-Watertown Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Kylie Peck stated that the market saw higher traffic numbers than in 2020, and nearly reached rates that the market was seeing before the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Each year we try and build on the success of the year before, you know, invite new vendors, fill in some,” Peck said. “People were so ready to be out and about. We’re really fortunate to have an open-air market so that really provided a great opportunity for customers this year.”
Peck said that this response from the community and the excitement from new and veteran vendors was what made the 2021 season a success.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better season. It’s been really great,” she said. “We’ve seen a lot of new customers, we’ve had new vendors. To me, that’s a really great way to mark a successful season.”
As the market continues to invite new vendors, crowd-favorite businesses also considered this season a success. Kylie Russell, who owns and runs Kylie’s Cakes and More, shared how she was welcomed back to the farmers market after being away at school for the past two summers.
“Everybody’s just so happy to be out and about and to still be able to support small businesses, Russell expressed. “I absolutely love the farmer’s market. This is where I thrive the most and it’s just wonderful here.”
And even on the final day, the market drew crowds of excited, and hungry, customers, stocking up on their favorite items before the season closed out. An example of this could be seen at the fan-favorite C&J Old Fashion Kettle Corn which had a record-breaking year in Watertown.
“We broke records the first four weeks at the market,” Owner Jerry Sherman said. “It’s nice to see people back out again and see the people coming and getting their kettle corn. We have a lot of regulars that just love it and come every single week. We’re finding today that they’re buying an extra bag because they know it’s the last week.”
The Watertown Farm and Craft Market ran from May 26 to October 6. It is set to return to Washington Street in the spring of 2022.