Farmer's Market has broad appeal
September 20, 2002
It's a stimulation of all the senses. The smell of fresh, sweet popcorn
fills the air while the bright flowers and unique jewelry appeal to the
eyes. Homemade cookies, tamales, candy apples and fresh fruit make the mouth
water just at a glance. Where do all these gifts come from? Nope, it's
not the county fair; it's in La Verne's own backyard.
With a new location in the parking lot of the La Verne City Hall beginning
last Saturday, the Farmers Market of La Verne offered a variety of treats
Maryann Stubblefield, manager of the La Verne Farmers Market, has been
involved with the event for four years.
Stubblefield said the Saturday morning market could not block off a
street in downtown La Verne, and a Saturday morning market has a different
venue than an evening market.
The decision to change the market's location was not final until last
Wednesday. Despite the small amount of time given to organize the market
for Saturday, Stubblefield believes the final results at the new location
will be positive.
"It's going to be a very, very good market," she said. "It's
going to build to a very good market."
Moving from its former location in the parking lot at the University
of La Verne Bookstore, the Market's few, however, talented vendors shared
One such vendor was Scratch Cookies and Bakery, owned and operated by
Marks began participating in the La Verne Farmers Market about a year
ago, when it was still at the bookstore location. He also took part in
the Tuesday night version of the Market as well as farmers markets at various
locations, including Monrovia.
"I do different cities," Marks said. "It's good advertisement.
It's half advertisement and half sales."
Marks said he began his business after being in the baking and restaurant
business for a long time.
Although business at the new location was a bit slow, Marks said it
would take time to pick up. He also said that the L.A. County fair had
"This is the first week, so it's gonna take some time for the city
to advertise and let people know where it is," Marks said. "I
think it will be a good location."
Food was not the only product offered. Flowers from Cho's Flowers in
Somis, Calif. were also present.
Owner Kyu Cho traveled from his 20-acre land in Ventura County to La
Verne to sell as many as 20 varieties of flowers. He said that in the spring
he has even more varieties to offer.
His family-owned business has grown and shipped flowers for 21 years
and has been a vendor at the La Verne Farmers Market for three years.
Like many of the vendors, Cho does various farmers markets, including
the markets that were held on Tuesday nights. Cho did not mind the new
location, but did miss some of his regular customers.
"I used to have a lot of steady customers there [downtown],"
Like Marks, he also felt business was slow because it was the first
In addition to Cho and Marks, Anita Bagham, owner of Anita's crystals
in Glendora, displayed her creations of belts and a selection of jewelry.
Bagham, who has been a Farmers Market participant for a year, said,
"I enjoy doing crafts. It started as just for fun, but then it became
a business." She added that she began this work seven years ago, but
made it into a business three years ago.
Other vendors included Gourmet Tamales from San Fernando, Temptations
candy apples and chocolate strawberries, Frutos Farms from Orange County,
Violet Perfection by Gini, Cookie Leefine fashion jewelry, Flotos
Original Ma & Pa Kettlecorn, Nextel, a booth that sold Asian Pears and
another that sold reversible bags. More vendors will participate in coming
Stubblefield said that during the off season of winter, the Farmers
Market will be located at the City Hall location. During the summer, however,
they hope to move it back to the downtown district. She said that the downtown
merchants wanted to do something in the downtown area.
"They're very motivated and creative in downtown," Stubblefield
The summer farmers markets on Tuesday nights in downtown La Verne ended
in August but will begin again next June.
Stubblefield is also looking forward to projected events that will correspond
with the upcoming holidays.
During fall and winter, the Saturday Farmers Market will continue to
provide goods to the community from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday in the
parking lot of La Verne City Hall.
Prices for renting space vary among vendors. Vendors are supplied with
the location and electricity.
Anyone interested in becoming a vendor can contact Stubblefield at (909)