I am writing to urge residents of Indiana Borough to support our beloved Indiana County Farmers’ Market. For those of you unfamiliar with the farmers’ market, it has been a twice-weekly venue supplying fresh produce, bakery items and cultural programming in downtown Indiana for many years now.
Recently, many Indiana Borough residents expressed their support at an Indiana Borough council meeting for an initiative to relocate the farmers’ market on Wednesday afternoons from its current location behind S&T Bank to a more central place in the new IRMC Park on North Seventh Street. These supporters included the CEO of IRMC, Steve Wolfe, and the president of the Downtown Indiana business group.
This proposal makes good sense for a number of reasons.
First, the farmers’ market is one of our most significant hubs of regular economic activity and community spirit. It is a proven fact that farmers’ markets bring economic vitality to town centers, as any shop owner on Philadelphia Street would no doubt tell us. They would certainly welcome the increased foot traffic from the farmers’ markets.
In regard to community, studies have shown that people are 10 times more likely to get to know their neighbors at farmers’ markets than they do at regular grocery stores, and isn’t this one of the reasons we built IRMC Park?
Second, in a related point, the farmers’ market offers the community a chance to get to know our farmers and to show our appreciation for their efforts to provide us with fresh, wholesome produce.
Perhaps this is why the Indiana County Farmers’ Market has such a long tradition here — because Indiana has such a long history of community support and neighborliness. That tradition should be embraced.
But, finally, we should recognize the efforts of those community members striving to continue making Indiana a great place to live.
Tell your Indiana Borough council representative to support our farmers’ market, or, better yet, attend the borough council meeting on April 8 at 7 p.m. Let’s move it to IRMC Park in downtown Indiana.