Wednesday, May 4, 2016
DALLAS — May brings flowers — and baked goods, fresh vegetables and other goodies — when Polk County Bounty Market opens Thursday in Dallas.
This year is the seventh season of the weekly farmers market and the biggest in terms of the number of vendors committed to being there every week.
“We have a lot of new vendors,” said Bonnie Dreier, market manager. “We’ve got, right now, 15 confirmed vendors to start opening day. However, I’ve been getting applications in daily, so that number will definitely climb.”
Fourteen vendors have committed to sell full season, while others will come in later when their crops are in season.
Growth in the market is in part due to Bounty Market’s unique insurance policy, which covers craft vendors so they don’t have to carry policies required by other markets in the area.
Dreier said the market lost eight vendors last year to the new insurance requirement that many sellers couldn’t afford.
Another part of the growth has come from recruiting. Dreier has been busy making calls to local farms to see if they would like to sell at Bounty Market.
That paid off.
“We will have a great core base this year,” Dreier said.
Four food trucks are among the full season vendors, and they will be allowed to stay open after the market officially closes at 3 p.m. Dreier said any other vendors will be welcome to stay after hours, as well.
Chelsea Metcalfe, the executive director of the Dallas Area Visitors Center, said vendors are interested to see if the dinner crowd will stop and shop the market when picking up supper at places such as Black Rock Barbecue and El Pique.
Staying open later hasn’t proven successful in other seasons, but some vendors may be willing to give it another shot.
“We are looking forward to that and hopeful that people will stop by and we get that good dinner crowd going so that the vendors can see that people are stopping and shopping,” Metcalfe said.
In June, kids activities will begin, provided by Family Building Blocks and Community Action Head Start on alternating weeks. Live music from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. will feature local band Cash & Company and fiddler Truman Price, also on alternating weeks.
Bounty Market will be open the week of Summerfest on July 28 and at Art in Park during Summerfest on July 31. A “community preparedness fair” featuring insurance providers, Dallas police and fire departments, and Monmouth’s Fifty1Fifty3 Tactical will be July 7.
Dreier said the market still is taking sponsors, vendors and entertainers.
“We have a big market; we can grow it,” Dreier said. “We can hold twice as many as we’ve got right now.”
What: Polk County Bounty Market
When: Thursdays May 5 through Sept. 29, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Academy Building grounds at the corner of Main and Academy streets in Dallas.
For more information: https://www.facebook.com/bountymarket/.