Saratoga Farmers' Market Wins #1 Market in New York
Saratoga Farmers’ Market was just voted #1 Favorite Market in New York State in a national contest conducted by the American Farmland Trust. It was the market’s second victory in 2 years.
Promotions Coordinator* Deborah Miles Czech says “It’s certainly exciting. People at the market view it as an affirmation of the loyalty and support of the customers.”
The contest began 4 years ago as “an opportunity to promote the work AFT does in reducing the loss of farmland and understanding the role farmers markets play in communities” says American Farmland Trust Marketing & Communications Coordinator Erica Goodman.
“On the farmers market side, it helps them to reach out to people and really engage their support” she adds. “And if they’ve won, it helps promote them. We’ve seen energy grow with markets out there really trying to push to get to the top.”
Like many other farmers markets nationwide, the people running Saratoga Farmers’ Market hustled for votes in past years. Market Coordinator Suzanne Voigt says, “Every year we’ve had computers at the market, we’ve promoted it, we’ve sought to win.”
However this year, they decided they would “lay low and let other markets rise.” Voigt said in an interview. “We made people aware that the contest was happening. We put it in our newsletter and our Facebook page. But we didn’t make it a big thing. We didn’t even have a sign up.”
Other markets encouraged customers to vote multiple times from different email addresses. “Please vote now & every day until the contest closes” Arkansas’s winning market urged its followers on Facebook on August 31.
Voigt says this year’s “was the sweetest victory of all. This tells us our clients are voting for us even when we aren’t telling them to. We’re truly grateful. It’s a big surprise.”
The continued support shows strong dedication among Saratoga Farmers’ Market customers. “People love coming to the market not only for the food and the vendor-produced products, they also come here for the sense of community,” Czech says. “There aren't many retail locations where people get that opportunity.”
Saratoga Farmers' Market will be open at High Rock Park Pavilions through the end of October, on Wednesdays from 3-6 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Starting in November, the market is open indoors for the same Saturday hours at Division Street Elementary School.
*The original version of this story incorrectly identified Miles Czech as Market Director
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