New farmers market in Davison Township - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

New farmers market in Davison Township

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(08/27/13) - For many Genesee County residents, a trip to the local farmers market is a family tradition, filled with long-lasting memories. Backers of a new market in Davison Township hope to start a new tradition next year.

This new Farmers Market in eastern Genesee County hopes to give area residents another place to shop local and to build a community presence for years to come.

Area residents will have shopping options in 2014, including a new farmers market being built off Court Street and Irish Road in Davison Township.

"There's been a high level of excitement. People are calling from all over. Now that the word is getting out, we're having vendors call from all over the state," says Mark Wood, co-owner of both the new market and D&W Windows, next door to where the market is being built.

Changes are also in store at the Flint Farmer's Market, which has been a fixture in the city since 1905. The market is moving back to downtown. With more than 20,000 additional square feet available in the old Flint Journal building, manager Dick Ramsdell expects good things.

"Even though the history and the tradition is rich here, we're taking the market to the next level. We honestly think it's the right place, it's the right time and that's what we can make happen," he said.

Several well-known Flint vendors have already made commitments to the Davison Township site, like Sandy Coykendall. "There's a lot of fond memories and I love this market. But, the move wasn't for me. I wish everybody who goes downtown good luck. There's room for both markets."

And while the response from new growers have been strong, according to Dave Wood, a co-owner with his brother Mark, "It filled up even before we turned the dirt. It's full, so you'll have to wait in line."

Others vendors, like Marjorie McCarron, are happy to stay in the city. "I'm going to Flint. We've been here since 1950. Why leave now?"

Both markets should give customers an even bigger selection of locally grown food items. Some, like Flint native Shelton Davison, are already making plans for next year. "I'll probably do both. I like to shop around and patronize both of them. I'll be all around each one."

The Wood Brothers estimate 10-15 new jobs will be created. While both markets say there is no rivalry, the real winners could be customers and local farmers beginning next spring.

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