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Market Season is Coming!


There are only three weeks left until the farmers market opens for the season! We are getting VERY excited for our third season. This year we are welcoming over a dozen new vendors to the market along with about 50 of our "old friends." There are also some exciting changes afoot for our third year!

Opening day is May 4th

See you in three weeks, everyone! Opening day is May 4th, and we hope you'll come down to show the farmers how much you've missed them over this long, dreadful winter.

We encourage every family to support the small businesses who attend the farmers market by visiting each week. The most important part of any farmers' market is the local growers! If every family in Newark spent only $25 per week on local food at the market, that would translate into half a million dollars in the pockets of small farmers and businesses. Imagine what that would do for our local economy!

Rain or shine, we'll see you here at 36 E Canal St, just south of the square, on May 4th. RSVP on Facebook and invite your friends!

Other activities on opening day:

  • Veggie tasting for kids
  • Recipe ideas with Licking Memorial Hospital chefs
  • Live music 
  • Market blessing at 5:45 pm - help us ring in the new season with a short interfaith ceremony. 

Wine at the Farmers Market?!

That's right! Every Tuesday and Friday you'll have the opportunity to sample locally made wines and meet the winemakers. You'll also be able to purchase bottles to go. What could be better than picking up ingredients for a great homemade dinner and wine to go with it? 

Tuesday News

The Tuesday markets will open in June this year instead of May and run through September. Those are the four peak months of produce in Ohio. We are also going to be spicing things up by adding some craft vendors to our Tuesday afternoon markets! They won't be there on Fridays, so if you're interested in checking out some quilts, greeting cards, jewelry, and the like make sure to come to our Tuesday markets, starting June 5th. You can also find them at craft market!

mothers day weekend craft cover v2.png

Our first art and craft market of the season will take place on Saturday, May 12th from 10 am to 3 pm. That's the day before Mother's Day! This is a great opportunity to shop for a last minute Mother's Day gift, or even better, spend some time together with Mom! 

The first 50 moms who arrive on the 12th will receive a free "mocktail" to celebrate. We have more than 30 vendors lined up for the day, so don't miss it! 

This year's art and craft markets are scheduled for May 12, September 8, and October 6. 

Come Visit us at Sweets on the Square!
April 27th 

The Downtown Newark Association always throws a great party on the Final Friday of the month in Downtown Newark, April through September. As always in April, the theme is Sweets on the Square. You can register here for one of 175 tickets. That gets you a free tote plus the opportunity to pick up something sweet for FREE from 25+ businesses on and around the square!

We'll be set up on the square with some of the amazing bakers you know and love from the Farmers Markets--Uncle Giant and Lona Belle's Home Baked Goods. Come say hi and max out on sugar just one week before the market opens for the season!

colin 3.jpg
colin 1.jpg

New Bike Repair Station Installed at CMD

Colin Eggert has assembled and placed a bicycle repair station at the Canal Market District in downtown Newark for his Eagle Scout project. He chose the Canal Market District due to its centralized location.  The station will provide the bike rider with tools and an air pump to make repairs to their bicycle. This will greatly benefit the community, especially those who rely on a bicycle as a primary mode of transportation. The Dero station is located next to the bike racks on the south side of the market plaza, right behind the Licking County Historic Jail. 

Thank you very much to Christian Robertson and Robertson Construction for donating the labor and materials for the cement pad where the repair station sits! We are very grateful to both Colin and Christian for their efforts in making improvements to the Canal Market District. 

Pledge to Eat Local

Take the pledge! Here's what some of your neighbors said about why they are pledging to eat local:

"We pledge to eat local because we trust the local producers. There's nothing like knowing where your food comes from!!!"  -Dennis and Brian Jamandre, owners of  Uncle Giant .   Find them at the market starting in May!

"We pledge to eat local because we trust the local producers. There's nothing like knowing where your food comes from!!!" 
-Dennis and Brian Jamandre, owners of Uncle Giant

Find them at the market starting in May!

"We pledge to eat local because it's real and wholesome food."  -Kyle, Megan, and Rosalind, Canal Market District regulars

"We pledge to eat local because it's real and wholesome food." 
-Kyle, Megan, and Rosalind, Canal Market District regulars

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.