OCONTO FALLS, Wis. The success of the Broadway Farmers Market in Green Bay has inspired one Oconto County business owner to start a similar farmers market up north.
Owner of Corki's Cup of Joy in Oconto Falls, Sophie Ford, came up with the idea of a county-wide farmers market so people who live up north don't have to travel far in order to enjoy local vendors.
"To travel to the markets in Green Bay becomes quite a bit of work, just because it's a 30-minute drive down to Green Bay and 30 minute drive back. It can be a late night when we want to participate in something, and up here in the north woods we don't have a lot of activities that go on," said Ford.
Ford believes the success of Green Bay's Wednesday Farmers Market is due to live music, a local craft beer garden and local vendors.
"I don't believe that it will succeed without those three things, and I wouldn't go any further if I couldn't get those three things here," Ford adds.
Oconto Falls city officials are backing Ford's plans, and hopes the idea will succeed.
"I absolutely think it's possible, I think it's a wonderful idea,” said Vicki Roberts, Oconto Falls City Administrator. “As a city there are certain ordinances and licenses that are required, which Sophie's already been in contact with my Deputy Clerk and they're working together to hopefully make this happen."
Ford says the Oconto County Farmers Market is working on recruiting a list of vendors. She says aside from craft breweries she's looking to recruit flowers, fresh produce, arts and crafts, and food trucks.
“Anybody local doing business, we want to promote them, but we also want to promote the healthy eating and get some really good vegetable vendors in here as well," says Ford.
Ford says the Oconto County Farmers Market plans on launching Thursday evenings from 4 to 8 p.m. beginning June 2020 at the Highland Plaza in Oconto Falls.