Sparta Green Market set to open May 17


It’s spring – and that means it’s time for one of White County’s traditions to get started. The Sparta Green Market, which takes place on the third Friday of every month, May through October, is a grassroots movement that was initially created to enhance the county’s Farmer’s Market by adding an evening market so those who can’t attend the traditional morning set-ups could have a chance to shop locally grown produce, meats, and handmade items.

Farmer’s Markets are some of the most community-based enterprises that exist in our society and have stood the test of time from early peddler days of selling goods along riverbanks to those who were using the waterways as roads of between countries to the more modern parking-lot vendors or community-based markets that are found throughout the world.  One thing that hasn’t changed over the years is that the producers are selling directly to consumers letting the seller benefit financially and the buyer benefit by knowing exactly where their products are coming from.

Most farmer’s markets are filled with local vendors. The USDA states that more than 85 percent of farmers market vendors travel fewer than 50 miles while more than half of farmers live less than 10 miles to from their market. And the Green Market is no different – in fact it is a requirement that vendors be from White County in order to reserve a spot at the monthly evening market.

Some advantages to shopping at a farmers market include:

  • Taste the real flavors of the produce
  • Celebrate the season with traditional goods
  • Celebrate the heritage and culture of the community by buying foods traditionally prepared in the area
  • Support the local economy
  • Eat wholesome natural foods instead of processed foods
  • Build connections with local farmers and shoppers to learn cooking tips, recipes, and meal ideas
  • Connect with your neighbors

Sparta’s Green Market, which takes place at Metcalf Park just off of Liberty Square in the heart of Sparta, offers every one of the above-listed things as it has become more than just a shopping opportunity. The Green Market is an event, a social experience, and has a unique feel all its own.

“The desire is to create a hip and vibrant ambiance in downtown where our neighbors can enjoy a market with not only fresh, local fruits and vegetables but a market enhanced with other products produced in our local communities, such as soaps, honey and woodcrafts,” the event founders claimed, and added that the third Friday of the month was chosen so the event could precede the traditional Bluegrass on the Square events. After visiting The Sparta Green Market a quick stroll down the square will lead folks to an evening of Bluegrass music at the amphitheater.

So, this Friday, get ready to join the tradition, join your neighbors, enjoy some laughs, pick up some produce or meat or pastries or handmade soaps or other gifts, kick back, relax, meet up with friends you haven’t seen. We’ll see you on the square!       


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