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February Newsletter

If you believe Punxatawney Phil, we've still got four more weeks of winter to go this year, and still another seven weeks after that until opening day of the 2018 farmers market! We'll be spending the next couple of months planning to make our third season the best one yet. In the meantime, we have a couple of important updates for you! 

February 24: Winter Market at the Licking County Library

1-4 pm, 101 W Main St (Main Library) in Meeting Room A

Our first ever winter market! This event is a partnership with the Licking County Library's Family Fun Day: Play with your Food.  The following market vendors will be present: 

BFarmer Honey - honey
Bird's Haven Farms - produce
Bob the Baker/BYOB Home Bakery - baked goods and meats
Bush Valley Farm - meats
Dana Lee's - baked goods
JC's Sweet Ice Tea, LLC - bottled iced tea and lemonade
Michael's Artisan Chocolates - chocolates
Momma's Secret Mixes - dip mixes
Ohio City Pasta - pasta and sauce
Siegrist Orchard - winter produce
Tristegus - soaps and lotions
Uncle Giant - confections
Weathervane - kettle corn
Winding Trails Maple Syrup - maple syrup

Family Fun Day will also feature plenty of other food-themed activities for families, including crafts, book sales, and a performance by the Spoon Man! 

Market Applications are Open

Help us make 2018's farmers' market and craft market the best yet! As we enter our third year, we are excited to reconnect with many of our old friends and make some new ones, too. If you grow, bake, or make something, consider applying to one our markets in 2018!

Visit the vendors section of our website to download applications. Information about each market is contained in the first few pages of the application document. 

We Pledge to Eat Local

The #1 reason people shop at the Canal Market District is to support local farmers. We couldn't agree more! There are so many reasons that supporting local farmers is important for the entire community. Here are just a few highlights of why people in YOUR community are pledging to eat local. 

Interested in being featured in our newsletter with your pledge to eat local? Email us!


CMD Musicians Get Together for a Midwinter Jam

Did you know that all of the musicians who play at our markets are volunteers? The music at our farmers market is organized by our volunteer Live Music Coordinator Randy Williams. We are so lucky to have this talented, dedicated group of artists! You can read more about some of them on our website here. 

On Saturday, February 10th, over a dozen of us gathered at the Newark Digital Academy for a midwinter music party. Over pizza and delicious homemade cupcakes, we had the opportunity to reconnect and get inspiration from one another. It's safe to say that all of us are looking forward to getting back to the Canal Market District and getting the music flowing once again. Thank you to Newark Digital Academy for hosting us!

We're always looking for more musicians! If you are interested in performing at the Canal Market District, please contact Randy Williams at rdeanw@fastmail.net or (740) 405-2835.

 Greg Greyson

Greg Greyson

 Rich Folk and Dr. Ron

Rich Folk and Dr. Ron

 John Begala

John Begala

 Stephen K Smith on dulcimer

Stephen K Smith on dulcimer


We're Hiring!

Our wonderful 2017 Farmers Market Manager, Lenise Sunnenberg, is moving on to greener pastures! While we're happy for her big move to a full-time gig at RevLocal, we're sad to have to replace her.  If you have 15-20 hours per week to spare from April-November and you love the market, please apply! We need a dedicated, passionate individual who loves people, local food, and being outside. If you're interested in applying, view our position announcement here.

Thank you to Lenise for her hard work over the past year! You will be missed. 

2018 Applications are Here!


Applications are available for both the 2018 Farmers' Market and Craft Market!  

We are so excited to start reconnecting with old friends and making new ones. Want to be part of the action here at the Canal Market District? Check out our vendors section to download the applications, which have all the information you need about our markets. 

Farmers' Market questions: Lenise@canalmarketdistrict.org
Art and Craft Market questions: Jazz@canalmarketdistrict.org

I started cooking and it changed everything.

Jazz Glastra, Executive Director of the Canal Market District

  100% local, farmers-market sourced salad with bacon leftover from the weekend, fresh yellow bell pepper, kale, and an egg over-easy. I swear, this isn't difficult!

100% local, farmers-market sourced salad with bacon leftover from the weekend, fresh yellow bell pepper, kale, and an egg over-easy. I swear, this isn't difficult!

During farmers market season, my husband and I plan our week around getting to the farmers market and buying the best of what the season has to offer. We look forward to walking through the market aisles, taking mental inventory of what each vendor is selling, and maybe buying a sweet treat before making decisions about what we want to bring home for the rest of the week. For us, this ritual is a social outing, a time to unplug from hectic work life, and a grocery trip all in one. And that doesn’t even take into account the free live music. Now that’s efficiency!

We didn’t always spend our time and our grocery budget this way, though. I’ve been interested in local food for many years, but I used to think that shopping almost exclusively at the farmers market just wasn’t practical. I thought it would cost too much, or I wouldn’t be able to find the ingredients that I needed for full meals. I was wrong.

For the first time in history, Americans now spend more money on food at restaurants than on groceries. A couple of years ago my husband and I sat down and really examined how much money we were spending on dining out versus cooking for ourselves and the results shocked us. We didn’t think we were too irresponsible—sure, we were buying lunch, but we didn’t go to fancy restaurants or run up big tabs at bars. Even still, the numbers were clear and we needed to make a change. We made a commitment to start planning our meals at the beginning of each week and cooking much more regularly. As a longtime supporter of local eating, I also wanted to start shopping as much as we could at farmers markets.

  Summer's first strawberries. No recipe required.

Summer's first strawberries. No recipe required.

Here’s what happened: our overall food expenditures went way, way down. We both lost more than 20 pounds. Our cooking skills increased exponentially. We only actually have to buy things at the grocery store once every two weeks or so. Our stress levels decreased because we no longer wasted time trying to figure out what to eat for dinner. We learned the cycles of eating seasonally and now look forward to the first strawberry, the first tomato, and the first pumpkin of the year.

Perhaps most exciting, we started enjoying our food so much more. For one, the quality of what we could get local, super-fresh, and in season at the market was on a whole different level from the typical grocery store produce. And since we started developing relationships with farmers at the market, we also just appreciated the care and hard work that goes into it our food a heck of a lot more.

As an added bonus, a lot more of our money now goes to support local businesses. According to the New Economic Foundation, farmers market purchases generate twice the local economic impact as buying the same products from a grocery store.

These days, I get to help run a twice-weekly farmers market here in downtown Newark at the Canal Market District. If you haven’t made it down to our farmers markets on Tuesday and Friday evenings yet, my challenge to you is to put $30 in your pocket and make a point of coming down next week. You might be surprised at what you can find. From meat and eggs to fresh produce and even some pantry staples like oats—we’ve got the groceries. For the community of growers who rely on this market, your support really matters. Once you make a habit of it, you might be surprised by what else can happen when you shop, cook, and eat with the seasons.  


CMD intern Ashton Millet caught up with JC for a few minutes as she was setting up for a busy market. Read his interview below.

Our vendor spotlight for this month is Jacquelyn Chapman of JC’s Sweet Ice Tea. Ms. JC is originally from Greenville, SC but now lives in Pataskala, OH. She is a self proclaimed “Licking County girl” now. Ms. JC’s purpose of selling her sweet tea and lemonades is to share a slice of southern hospitality in Ohio. She prides herself on selling what she calls the only real sweet tea in the area. One of the first things the Jacquelyn mentions when you come up to her stand is that every product taste different from each other and that each product has its own unique taste.

JC’s Sweet Ice Tea has been in business since 2011. The idea to launch JC’s sweet tea started one summer day in South Carolina. It all started with Ms. JC and her husband sitting down with family drinking sweet tea on the porch after dinner. The entrepreneurial spirit of Ms. JC started to go to work as she was drinking her sweet tea. She told her family, “lets sell this to the world.” Her family had doubted the plan so as soon as she got back to Ohio she started to lay the foundation for JC’s Sweet Ice Tea.

She started off selling her sweet tea in a farmers’ market in an alley in Columbus. At the time her and her husband would sell their sweet tea by the cup out of a bucket. Eventually she got the advice to begin to bottle her Sweet tea and Lemonade. From there JC’s Sweet Ice Tea began to grow. Jacquelyn said that, “once people have one bottle of my sweet ice tea they need to have more.” Now JC’s Sweet Ice Tea is in farmers’ markets, stores, whole foods, and restaurants all over central Ohio. The small business still continues to grow. Jacquelyn mentioned that she hopes to take the product “nationwide.” She is in talks with potential customers in various areas in the south from South Carolina to Louisiana along with others throughout Ohio.

I asked Ms. JC if she had any advice for those who may want to start their own small business. She said, “It’s a lot of work, so be careful what you wish for.” This wasn’t intended to scare off potential small business owners but it was intended to tell people to make sure that they know that being a small business owner is hard work. She knows that the behind the scenes work that goes into being a vendor is a large commitment. The Canal Market District Farmers’ market has helped much of that hard work pay off though. When talking about the Canal Market District Farmers’ market Ms. JC said that it has “allowed her to expand the knowledge of her brand.” Jacquelyn said that this farmers’ market has “really helped her customer base grow.”

JC’s Sweet Ice Tea isn’t the only thing that Jacquelyn is up to. When she isn’t at the Canal Market District Farmers’ market or working on her products she is also very active with her church. She sings in the choir and when she isn’t doing that she is also fulfilling her duties as a deaconess at her church. She also enjoys traveling whether it's going to Columbus with her family or driving across the country to California. She says she likes to do most of her work during the summer and then to travel during the winter. When it is time to wind down she usually watches movies with her husband.

To end the interview with JC’s Sweet Ice Tea I asked Jacquelyn what she was the most proud of. She said that she is the most proud of her energy and how the customers love her product. You can see how true this is if you watch Jacquelyn go to work at the farmers’ market. She talks to nearly every customer that walks by and when they try her products the smile on their faces can be seen a mile away. When talking to Ms. JC you really see that she has a lot of pride and passion for her product. Jacquelyn said that there are two things we should know, one is where you were born and the other is why you were born. She believes that she was born to bring her family’s sweet ice tea to as many people as possible.


Meet Brett of BStone Squared


How long have you been selling what you make? Been in business for 3 years.

How did you get started? The first thing I made was a set of cornhole boards about 12 years ago. We had a cheap set that broke & had a family reunion we were hosting & wanted to have those to play.

I tore into the project thinking, I'll fix these but found they were poorly made & I could make a much better set if I gave it some effort.

I remember my Grandpa Cliff paying me big compliments at the reunion & was surprised I had made the boards. He asked a bunch of questions & looking back now, he knew then I was going to be "making things"! Since then I’ve been following in my grandpas footsteps , experimenting with wood working and finding joy in making nearly anything.

It took me years to mature & have that desire to learn more. Woodworking takes a great deal of patience & I have "grown into" it!

Although I never worked hand in hand with my grandpa, I can feel him there when I dig into a project. The hobby became a passion & I thought I'd test the waters with a business. I started with local farmers markets & the reception has been great. It's taken me to places as far as New York City already in the past couple years. 

My grandpa made a ton of custom furniture in his day & I find myself looking over the pieces in my parents house now & strive to one day be as talented as he was. I even have a wood hand planer that was my grandpas that I keep in my shop.

What’s something about your work that people might not know just by looking? Each piece is somehow "finished" by my daughter who is 4 and loves to be included. Kaylee loves to help give finishing touches and help daddy.

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You can find Brett at our June 3rd, August 5th, and October 1st Art and Craft Markets. Find him on Facebook @bstonesquared or online at www.bstone2.com