Youth Vending Program

The Clear Lake Farmers Market wants to support budding young entrepreneurs! Young people, up to 18 years of age, will be given the opportunity to sell handcrafts and homegrown produce. In offering local youth this opportunity, we hope to introduce them to various skills, including marketing, decision-making, record-keeping/monetary skills, interpersonal skills and building their knowledge of the farmers market and local food community.  


During the 2018 market season 18 Youth Vendors participated in the program. Thanks to support from the Clear Lake Noon Lions, canopies and tables were purchased so the kids could have their own stall for a true market experience. Goods sold included cedar sachets, fudge, cupcakes, apples, greeting cards, dog & cat toys, coffee, muffins, bread, lemonade, eggs, aloe plants & more! All items were handmade, baked from scratch or home grown and after trying it once many returned again or expressed interest in participating again this year.


This season, the Clear Lake Farmers Market Board has decided to expand this program and provide 3 dedicated youth vending stalls on all market days. Special thanks to our Youth Vending Sponsor, The Gabrielson Clinic for Women, for making this expansion possible. We’re excited to see what our young entrepreneurs have to offer this summer!


Information on the Youth Vending Program including the rules and online application can be found at www.clearlakefarmersmarket.com/apply or by emailing clfarmersmarket@gmail.com

Opening Day

Hey… Don’t miss Farmers Market Opening Day – May 18
By Andrea Evelsizer

The Clear Lake Farmers Market Board and Vendors are very excited about the upcoming Opening Day at Market and we can’t wait to meet you there! The market will open May 18 from 9am-noon at the Surf Ballroom Parking Lot.

Being named as one of the Top 10 Iowa Farmers Markets by “Best of Iowa” signifies the growth and popularity of the market. You’ll want to allow enough time to stroll through the market, enjoy the live music, browse the booths, purchase your local produce and stop at one of the adjacent restaurants for even more relaxation and community.

So far we have over 45 vendors registered and you can expect to meet at least 25 of them on Opening Day. Early spring greens, asparagus and other spring vegetables will be available, as well as bakery products, popcorn, jams, jelly, honey, maple syrup, meats, eggs, cheese, soaps/lotions, jewelry and unique local art.

Bring the kids on Saturday as we will be unveiling our “MAKE at Market” children’s activity which will also be available once a month throughout the summer. Thank you to CLTel and the Noon Lions for making this hands-on learning activity a reality!

Don’t miss the Youth Vendors, under the red canopies, where you will find young entrepreneurs who try out their skills in preparation and sales. We have set aside 3 designated stalls this year for Youth Vending. If you know of someone who might be interested, the youth vendor application is available on our website.

Mark Your Calendars so you don’t forget – The Farmers Market will be held every Saturday morning from May 18th through October 19th from 9:00 am – 12:00 noon.

If you are interested in being a sponsor, vendor, or volunteer, check out our website at www.clearlakefarmersmarket.com or contact clfarmersmarket@gmail.com. Be sure to follow the Market on Facebook and Instagram for the most up to date information and special events.

Weekly Activities At Market

By Jessi Myers

Each week the Clear Lake Farmers Market
offers a kid’s activity for families to enjoy together. The activities are
designed to be a fun diversion while also promoting the same interests and
skills that are common to Farmers Market vendors. While the primary goal
of offering kid’s activities is entertainment, a secondary benefit may be
inspiring future creatives and producers.

Innovation, hands-on
creativity, imagination, design, and execution are all steps to creating a
successful product for Farmers Market.
From planning the layout of a
garden, to building fences around a pasture, deciding on complementary
flavors to combine in a jam, or adjusting a recipe to perfect a new bread,
every vendor that sells at market has used skills developed through trial
and error and determination. Our hope is by offering the opportunity to
make chemical reaction boats, build a house for bees, design a corn
mosaic, plant a seed, or make a healthy snack we will light a spark of
interest.

This season a new offering will be available at least
once a month at the kid’s activity booth. MAKE at Market is our new mobile
makerspace. Makerspaces are popping up at schools and public libraries
across the country. Each space is unique in content and design.
MAKE
at Market focuses on using building materials, crafting supplies, and
recycled materials for creative exploration. Kids have an opportunity to
combine the use of tools such as hammers and screwdrivers with fabric
scraps, art supplies, old magazines, maps and so much more to create
whatever they can imagine. As an ongoing fundraiser for the Clear Lake
Farmers Market, MAKE will also be available for event and birthday party
rental.

This project was made possible by the generous
financial support of the Noon Lions and CL Tel. We are so appreciative of
their support. We have also received extensive donations of recycled
materials and art supplies from many individuals in the community. Thank
you to all that have donated.

f you are interested in more
information about rental availability and pricing or donating supplies
please contact clfarmersmarket@gmail.com

We look forward to a
fantastic season of kid’s activities at the Clear Lake Farmers Market. We
hope your family will join us.

The Clear Lake Farmers Market is
held from 9 a.m. to noon every Saturday morning through
Oct.19. For more information, visitwww.clearlakefarmersmarket.com,
and follow the Market on Facebook and Instagram for the most up
to date information and special events.

We’re Hiring!

The Clear Lake Farmers Market is hiring! Join the fun and become part of the fastest growing farmers market in North Iowa!

We are currently looking to fill two positions: Market Set-Up & Tear Down and Market Manager. Full job descriptions can be found below. If interested, please fill out the contact form or email us at clfarmersmarket@gmail.com. CLICK HERE if you’d prefer to apply via our Face Book job postings. We look forward to hearing from you!

* Indicates Required Fields

Clear Lake Farmers Market Manager Position (Part Time)

The Market Manager is responsibilities for coordination and communications on behalf of the market. The Market Manager Duties include:

Participation with CLFM Board:
Maintain open communication with the Market Board and attend board meetings to offer updates and suggestions
Write promotional articles (Mirror Column) as requested by marketing committee
Work with the Market Board to conduct a post-season vendor survey to evaluate the season
Resolve any disputes that may arise between vendors, consumers and the community (involve the Market Board as needed to help resolve issues)
Perform other tasks as assigned by the board, as necessary
Assist with customer counts, special events and coordination of volunteers, as needed

Statewide Meetings:
Attend yearly statewide Farmers Market Association meeting/training held in February

Rules and Regulations:
Maintain a good understanding of all market, state and local rules
Update CLFM Rules and Regulations documents to reflect regulation changes by the state and updates made by the CLFM board
Distribute and enforce CLFM Rules & Regulations
Monitor compliance with Rules & Regulations and communicate with vendors to resolve any disputes
Respond to vendor questions and ask the Market Board for clarification if needed
Act as a liaison between vendors and the Market Board to maintain a free flow of information and transparency
Report any violations to the Market Board for further action if necessary

Manage my Market Website:
Maintain the Manage my Market (MMM) account and update application information annually
Ensure payments to MMM are made in a timely manner
Assist vendors to apply via MMM and if necessary encourage vendors to complete their profiles
Send out invoices to vendors once they have been approved by the board
Collect and maintain accurate records of vendor payments and follow up, in a timely manner, with vendors who have outstanding payments
Ensure that all necessary insurance certificates and licenses are current and on file
Update stalls assignments for accuracy each week and post at trailer

Finances:
Maintain accurate financial records of checks and deposits
Track deposits for stall fees, donations/sponsors and/or merchandise sales and update financial committee on account activity
Write checks for music on a weekly basis
Pay other bills as needed, in collaboration with financial committee
Check the CLFM PO box regularly and handle items that come in the mail

Spring Vendor Meeting:
Work with the Market Board vendor representatives to coordinate spring vendor meeting
E-mail pre-season information to vendors with spring meeting details, stall information and other market information
Coordinate the selection of Vendor Representatives, annually at the spring meeting
Assign vendor stalls (coordinate with the Market Board as needed)

Online Accounts:
Manage CLFM email and online accounts
Respond to CLFM e-mails and to messages on Facebook in a timely manner
Send email updates/market information to vendors
Post Facebook status updates regularly and create FB events as needed
Ensure the CLFM website is up to date including current copies of Rules and Regulations, manager contact information, market dates, upcoming music and events, special activities etc.

 

Farmers Market Set-Up & Tear Down

Saturdays approximately 7-8:30 and 12-1:00
Hourly pay depending on agreed upon tasks.
Multiple applicants may be considered for a shared or alternating schedule.

Day prior to market:

Set up farmers market yard signs around town (per map).

On Market Day:

Before Market

Arrive at market sufficiently early to have all set up completed by 8:30
Hang/display the current vendor layout map for vendors to find their space
Be available during vendor setup and to answer any questions.
Coordinate short term vendor stall assignments and adjust stall layout/assignments as necessary in the case of a park car or other obstacle
Update “chalk” signs with info about music, special events, sponsors, and in-season produce
Place all on site signage prior to market opening (welcome signs, “chalk” signs, flags and banner etc.)
Pull trash cans into place and set up cones if needed
Set up benches by music, and canopy for musician
Set up “welcome booth” and “special events booth” (i.e. set up tables, canopies, etc.)

After Market

Return tables, canopies, benches, signs, banner, flags, etc. to the trailer.
Ensure that the market area is clear and free of debris after market close
Pick up lawn signs around town.

2019 Vendor Open House

It may be snowy outside but we’re thinking spring! The 2019 Clear Lake Farmers Market season begins on May 18th and our market board and volunteers have been busy planning. All returning vendors and those interested in becoming a vendor are invited to this open house style gathering on Sunday, March 3rd from 1:00 to 3:00 at 18 N 3rd St, Clear Lake (Simply Nourished) to socialize, snack on local goodies, ask questions and hear about all of the exciting things that will be happening at market this year!

Interested in becoming a vendor? CLICK HERE for more information!

Thanks to Simply Nourished for allowing us to use your space! For those who are not familiar with the store – Simply Nourished carries many local products and sponsored a weekly healthy snack for children at market every week last year.

 

Thank You for Another Great Season!

Thank You for Another Great Season!

Andrea Evelsizer – Board President

Another Farmers Market Season has come and gone so I want to share the
highlights from 2018. The market has been growing each year since we moved
to the Surf parking lot and this year we hosted 52 vendors, 29 of which
attended for the full season. Each week you could shop from an average
35-40 vendors ranging from fresh produce, eggs, meat, honey, and baked
goods to handmade soaps, jewelry, rugs, pottery and other handcrafted
items. This year we welcomed 18 youth vendors selling items like fudge,
pet toys, apples, coffee, baked goods and more. The youth vending program
has been a great success and we hope to grow this in future years.

We enjoyed live music each week, by local musicians, and held five
cooking/taste testing events in a partnership with Healthy Harvest of
North Iowa and their Charlie Cart mobile kitchen.

All these successes can be attributed to the great support of our city,
chamber of commerce, local business sponsors and the shoppers from near
and far. We often hear that visitors to Clear Lake are shopping at our
market and that we’re known to be the largest market between Des Moines
and the Twin Cities.

Specifically, the Clear Lake Farmers Market board and vendors would
like to thank all of our wonderful sponsors for their support this year,
including: CDI Inc., Kingland, Hall Realty, CLTel, and Ray and Terri
Mulford. Also, thank you to the Surf Ballroom for the use of your parking
lot, Simply Nourished for the snacks at the youth activities table and to
all the volunteers, vendors, and loyal customers.

Even after the market ends there are still ways to enjoy local products
during the off season. Healthy Harvest of North Iowa has a database on
their website (www.healthyharvestni.com) where
you can search for local food products such as meat, eggs, honey, fall
crops (squash, pumpkins, potatoes, carrots, onions etc.) and purchase
directly from the farmers. Many farmers are willing to deliver to you.
Simply Nourished Market (downtown, to the east of City Park) sources as
much as possible locally year round and the Hy-Vee stores in Mason City
are sourcing more and more local product from North Iowa Fresh, LLC. (www.northiowafresh.net),
Kittleson Potatoes, and other local growers. Also, many of our vendors
will be attending holiday arts and craft shows, so keep an eye out for
those.

Thank you for a great year, it was really fun! We’re look forward to
seeing you next year!

The Gangs All Here!

The Gangs All Here!

By Ashley Stokke

There may be the chill of fall in the air and a subtle stillness
of children back into the classroom, but don’t be deceived! The Clear
Lake Farmers Market gang is ALL HERE!!! That’s right. This time of
year there is an abundance of delicious fall produce and a bounty of
beautiful fall ornamentation that our market vendors are thrilled to be able
to offer to their customers. Fall season produce takes on a natural sweetness with cool nights and is a delicious addition to your dinner table.

If you didn’t already know it, the Clear Lake Farmers Market is open
WELL into the fall season to offer you the freshest produce and
ornamentals possible. The market is open every Saturday now through the third
weekend in October! Our final market day will be Saturday, October 20th, so
there is lots of time to come out and enjoy all of the wonderful flavors,
sights and smells of fall. And don’t forget about our amazing artisans
and talented crafters. There are some amazing products available that
would make lovely holiday gifts! It’s always nice to get some holiday shopping out of the way early.

I’d also like to take a minute to say what a wonderful season it
hasbeen so far at the Clear Lake Farmers Market. There have been
great turnouts every week and the vendors do such a fantastic job of
being consistent with their customers. The music has been a wonderful
treat to market goers as well as the children’s activities and Youth
Vending days. It is vital to the future of our market to get these young entrepreneurs involved in local food production, vending, and just being a part of a farmers market. It really is such a fun place to start your Saturday morning in beautiful Clear Lake.

See you at market!

Celebrating Local Food

The Clear Lake Local Foods Committee is planning their 5th annual local food event for October 6th, 2018 from 4 to 7 p.m.   CLICK HERE for more information.  This year’s potluck style event will be a celebration of the bounty of our locally-grown food at the Central Gardens of North Iowa and will feature hot, homemade soups made with fresh, local ingredients. This family friendly event will include yard games, folk music and gift drawings.  There is no charge for the event but your free will donation is appreciated!

You Bring:
Potluck dish to share – local ingredients are encouraged!
(side dish, bread, salad, appetizer or dessert)
Lawn chairs or picnic blanket
Your own place setting and drinks.

BIG Thank You to CL Tel for the generous music sponsorship, Furleigh Fruit & Vegetable Farm for the pumpkins and gourds for the center pieces, Central Gardens of North Iowa for being a great partner and the following businesses for donating to our gift basket: Simply Nourished, Mossycup Farms, Natural Plus Nursery, Clear Lake Farmers Market, Cerro Gordo County Public Health, Healing House Herb Shop and North Iowa Fresh.
 
The goal of the Clear Lake Community Farm to Fork Dinner Committee is to provide an event that brings local food producers, local food establishments, and the community together in an effort to strengthen awareness and build relationships. We view local food as a tool for community and economic development, as well as for improving public health. In addition, fresh local food just tastes good!  Proceeds from the previous dinners have been used to help fund the improvements that were made to our Clear Lake Farmers Market, kick start the Share Life summer Kids Cafe, and purchase plants for the Central Garden’s Bee Happy garden. We have many ideas for exciting future projects!

Local Food and the Local Economy

By Marissa Fichter

Clear Lake. It is a wonderful place to live. One of the most endearing
parts about Clear Lake has been its ability to help small, locally-owned
businesses thrive.

However, even with a great local variety of products, we regularly
choose the convenience of driving to a big-box store for routine
purchases. There, we can expect to find a blemish-free tomato and
perfectly sized zucchini. In doing so, we exchange a chance to impact the
local economy for the convenience of a one-stop shop, losing the valuable
relationship with those who produce our food.

Somewhere in our minds, I truly think we desire that relationship. We
also desire to play a part in something bigger, like impacting the number
of local jobs and revenue.

Even so, some think that the idea of a community supporting its local
agricultural system is out of reach. Ultimately, it starts with each one
of us. We can make that impact together.

In fact, a 2013 study conducted by Iowa State University (Enderton,
Bregendahl 2013) comprehensively showed the impact of the local food
economy. It showed that across the state, if the 74 food buyers who
participated in the data collection increased their local food buying from
9 percent to 30 percent of their total food budget, Iowa’’s economy would
gain $21.5 million in one year. That number blows me away. Only 74 people.
When that money is circulating locally, it is more likely to generate
economic growth as well.

It is beneficial in more ways than simply growing Iowa’s economy. When
we purchase locally, we can also be sure that a larger fraction of the
money we spend goes directly to the person who grew and put in the work to
create a beautiful product.

In my opinion, buying local is a great way to show appreciation for the
talents and gifts of others in our community. This simple act also allows
us to know our community deeper. The more faces we recognize and know, the
more we make this little vacation town a “home.”

I encourage you to begin your journey by knowing your farmer. Begin
recognizing the North Iowa Fresh (NIF) labels, the deep red strawberries
from Red Shed Gardens (Forest City), the familiar, sweet flavor of carrots
from One Step at a Time Gardens (Kanawha), and the crunchy sunflower
shoots from Twisted River Farm (Mitchell). Does the sticker on your
butternut squash say it is imported or traveled a long way to make it to
the grocery store, or is the “sticker” a clump of dirt from a
freshly-picked fruit?

It would be nearly impossible for this vision to become a reality if
local goods were only available during a three-hour window every Saturday
morning through the summer. This is why it is necessary that businesses in
the area share the responsibility to support local. It is great getting to
see crops from familiar farms and faces popping up all around North
Iowa.

Those who cannot make it to the Clear Lake Farmer’s Market are not out
of luck. Instead, the same local products and produce are currently
available in multiple locations. One of the largest catalysts making this
possible is North Iowa Fresh. The staff at NIF have worked incredibly hard
making local produce accessible at larger grocery stores like HyVee. NIF
has also sought out smaller businesses like Simply Nourished (local,
organic grocery stocking exclusively chemical-free produce) to sell local
produce as well as restaurants like Fieldhouse (Clear Lake) and Cafe Mir
(Fertile).

This cross-marketing of local produce is allowing local food to make an
appearance in a typical Iowan’s life. The more places this food is
available, the more normal it becomes to buy local over imported.

A huge thank you to the vendors who attend Clear Lake Farmer’s Market
and to other contributors helping to grow the local food market beyond
Saturday mornings. We look forward to the continued growth of a
sustainable, local agricultural economy.

Local Honey – Sweet and Healthy

By Judy Delperdang

Satisfy your sweet tooth – and feed your health – with honey from the
Clear Lake Farmers Market.

“If you’’re looking for a sweet treat, there’s nothing better,” said Riley
Finer of Finer Honey Farms.

And honey is good for you.

“The benefits for allergies is what I promote with our customers,” said
Tammy Fuller of Honey Dome Farms. A teaspoon a day “ will help build the
immunity to the allergies that most people have reactions to.”
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