PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The Southside Farmers Market returned to Peoria Saturday morning.
The market is stationed in the former Aldi/Save-a-Lot parking lot on 210 S. Western Avenue. It’s aimed at bringing fresh food and produce to the food desert on the city’s southside.
Martha Ross, coordinator, said the market had more than 130 people come within the first two hours.
“Residents don’t have access to fresh foods and vegetables and that kind of thing,” Ross said. “But we thought we’d do a business model and invite other businesses to participate so that they could so their goods and services.”
Ross said they received a grant from a community foundation to host the market this year.
She said for eight weeks they will have their vendors provide services for anyone in the area to enjoy. Vendors came out Saturday to sell food, shirts, flowers, and more.
Ross said as far as fresh food, people can expect anything from tomatoes, watermelons, eggplants, cabbage, onions, carrots, greens, etc.
She said she doubts they’ll get another big grocery store in the area, but they’re hoping to change that.
“We would like to own a grocery store of our own in our community and invest in our own community,” Ross said. “But it means that people would have to go other places to be able to get their food and food services. Maybe not even in Peoria. We’d like to keep the business in Peoria if possible.”
Ross said the market will operate from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. every Saturday until October 10. She said she’s hoping those in the area will take advantage of the fresh and healthy food while they can.
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