By Pauline Benetti
Special to The PREVIEW
Local growers are deep into it — soil that is. The soil has been tilled, amendments have been added, seeds are sown, starts are in, weeds are coming out. The harvest will begin soon —just in time for the Pagosa Farmers Market opening on June 17.
The Pagosa Farmers Market runs on Saturdays from June 17 through Sept. 16 and is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This is an opportunity to add some extra money to your budget and provide the community an essential product.
The Farmers Market offers growers a couple of plans: 1. Your own booth for $240 for the season (with one week gratis) or $20 each market if you cannot make the season, or 2. Participation in the Small Growers Co-op, where you can sell when you have extra produce and leave when you are sold out. The cost of this booth is shared by whoever is present and the tasks of setting up and taking down rotate.
For those folks who like to cook rather than grow, there is new legislation allowing for more liberal regulation of what type of food can be produced in home kitchens for direct sale at Farmers Markets. It is included within the Cottage Food Act. The Pagosa Farmers Market invites vendors who are certified under this program to participate in the 2017 market this summer. Not certified but want to be? Call CSU agent Wendy Rice at 382-6461.
To simplify matters, the Southwest Organization for Sustainability (SOS), sponsor of the market, offers an umbrella Colorado sales tax license and Town of Pagosa Springs Business License for a small fee for noncommercial vendors. Applications are available at www.sospagosa.org.
If you have already visited the market, you know that produce sells out every Saturday, so an early arrival pays off in terms of selection. You also know that being at the market is a fun community experience.
In addition to the vendor booth, there is music from local musicians and food and shaded tables where you can relax and enjoy the morning. Find us downtown at 191 E. Pagosa St. (East Side Market).
For more information, contact Pauline Benetti, market coordinator, at 264-5232; or Ron Chacey, Small Growers Co-op coordinator, at 264-6275.