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Farmers' Market gets new manager, opening day

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The Gallatin Farmer's Market will open May 6. FILE PHOTO

The Gallatin Farmers' Market will be under new management when it opens for the 2017 season next month.

A lease agreement between the city, which owns the market, and the Gallatin Area Chamber of Commerce was approved Tuesday by the Gallatin City Council.

"We are looking forward to bringing more value and opportunity to those who vend as well as shop at the market," Gallatin Area Chamber of Commerce CEO Kim Baker said about the organization's new role.

The management change came at the request of the facility's former operator, Greater Gallatin, and is meant to allow the nonprofit to focus more on other obligations related to downtown merchants and community events.

"(The farmers' market) needs more attention, new blood and somebody with different ideas," Greater Gallatin Executive Director Donna Belote said. "This is a very positive move. The chamber has the resources to get the vendors in, to get the customers down there and I think they will be great with it."

Opening day at the market, which is located at 160 W. Franklin St. next to the Gallatin Police Department, is scheduled for Saturday, May 6. The event is expected to include feature live music and other activities in addition to vendors selling items produced locally. Limited space for artisans will also be available.

For the 2017 season, the market will be open Wednesdays from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. through October. Additional times and days could be added at a later date.

"The biggest focus for this season is we're hoping to better expose the market and make everyone aware of what is going to be there," Baker said. "By increasing traffic it gets more people out supporting not just our local farmers, but also our local businesses that are around the farmers' market area."

As for the future, chamber officials are evaluating potential opportunities to use the space for additional community events throughout the week, Baker added. However, no plans have been finalized.

For more information about the Gallatin Farmers' Market contact the Gallatin Area Chamber of Commerce at 615-452-4000. Vendor applications are still being accepted and are $10 per week or $100 for the season.

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