The Healthy New Albany Farmers Market is back in full swing, with nearly 50 regular rotating weekly vendors and another 50 making occasional appearances throughout the season.
The market is open from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday through September 15 in front of the New Albany branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, 200 Market St.
In its 12th season, the market has been largely uninterrupted by COVID-19, said Emily Snyder, market manager for Healthy New Albany.
In 2020 it was moved to the parking lot of the Church of the Resurrection, 6300 E. Dublin-Granville Road, as there was more room for social distancing.
It returned to its usual place in the Market Square last year, but customers were asked to wear masks if they weren’t fully vaccinated, and hand sanitizer was on nearly every table.
This year’s market started on June 23.
“It was really awesome – summer back in Market Square,” Snyder said. “People felt more willing to go out and socialize without a mask because it’s outdoors.”
She said a few vendors sold merchandise.
The market has a wide range of vendors selling fresh fruits and vegetables, pastas, cheeses and even lotions, fresh cut flowers, candles and spices.
Add to the raffle of food trucks, live music and cocktails, as the market is in the designated outdoor refreshment area, which means customers aged 21 and over can consume purchased alcoholic beverages at local bars and restaurants from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the DORA zone.
Snyder said Healthy New Albany decided to have the market on Thursdays because many other markets are held on Saturdays and Sundays, as well as other days of the week.
New this year, Healthy New Albany launched pop-up farmers markets at local businesses; for example, every other Tuesday at the Bob Evans headquarters in the New Albany International Business Park.
Healthy New Albany also hosts a winter market: the first Saturday of the month from November through March at the Philip Heit Center for Healthy New Albany.
The Cheesecake Connection bakery, owned by Meaghan and Pearce Eckert of Westerville, joined the market in the final weeks of the 2021 summer season and was there for the June opening of this year.
Pearce Eckert, who said the desserts are made in a licensed kitchen in Dublin, said he was impressed with the vitality of New Albany.
“Oh my goodness this is fabulous – the best farmers market we’ve been to since,” he said.
He said their bakery offers 10 styles of individual, full-size cheesecakes.
“We’re always able to fulfill special requests for things people are looking for, and if we haven’t done that before, we’re always willing to try something new,” he said.