Kent Farmers Market: Is it good for all?

  • BY Wire Service
  • Tuesday, June 2, 2009 1:59pm
  • Opinion

It’s time again for the good old Farmer’s Market in Kent. We can reminisce once again of the days gone by when farmers in the Kent Valley loaded their produce on horse-drawn wagons to bring the best of their toils to market, so we citizens of other professions could purchase fresh fruit and vegetables for our tables.

Well, it is still true. I bought some fresh flowers last year and relived what my mom said they smelled like when she was a girl.

It has evolved somewhat in the last few decades, however. I don’t think that the first farmers’ markets had kettle corn or wind chimes or maybe even spinners that blow in the wind with swirling bright colors. But you can be sure that they had ice cream and hotdogs to make the atmosphere carnival-like.

The Lions’ Club of Kent that sponsors the market works mighty hard putting that shindig together every week: I know that for a fact.

Sometimes community clubs and organizations are like the Texan who got on his horse and rode off in all directions. We forget the bottom line of service, “The Community,” “The People,” or how our city can benefit from our service. We slip into “Me, My, and the time I give that everyone should appreciate.”

You know how sometimes we get into a path of forward march and someone points out to us that there might be a better way? It causes us to bristle and avoid the new direction, because, “This is the way we are doing it!”

Well, I have talked to some of the businesses in the Kent downtown historic district and found that at least one loses somewhere around 50 percent of its revenue, because of the cork that the market places in the middle of Kent. The market takes up the only street that links Kent Station shops with Historic Kent shopping. Other merchants have experienced the same shut-down mode during that Saturday period.

If the market vendors were located up on the curb, next to the new fountain area, that might open the street for passage as a street should be, especially since it’s the only street.

One thing must be remembered. We are all in this together. What works for one should work for all. If all the merchants don’t benefit then we need to change it so all will benefit. There is no room for “We have always done it this way, so this is how we are doing it!”

We are One Country, One State, and we need to be One Kent.

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