The Old Beach Farmers’ Market is kicking off its 10-year celebration anniversary on Saturday, May 27th, 2017 with a series of events aimed at celebrating its past ten years as it looks forward to a continued and bright future.
The Old Beach Farmers’ Market (OBFM) is a fresh outdoor marketplace situated in the heart of the resort area, just six blocks from the ocean and one block from the Virginia Beach Convention Center, in the parking lot of Croc’s 19th Street Bistro. OBFM, a non-profit market, was conceived in February 2008 and its first market session took place on June 8th, 2008 with three vendors (Cromwell’s Produce, LG’s Happy Clam Stand and Croc’s 19th Street Bistro) who grew to 10 by the end of that season. The 2017 season will host 26 full-time and more than a dozen part-time vendors.
The Market’s mission is to establish a Resort Area farmers market for residents and visitors, encourage locavores and educate others about local, fresh, and sustainable foods, promote local family farms, watermen and Virginia wineries, connect local sources to chefs, restaurateurs and the public and revive an old-fashioned kind of shopping in the historic Old Beach District.
“Old Beach Farmers Market is proof positive that a small group of volunteers can effect a big positive change in their neighborhood,” said Duff Kliewer, Jr., President of the Old Beach Farmers’ Market. “As we approach our 10th Anniversary, we celebrate the vendors who saw the vision and the opportunity we were offering and the customers who have supported our growth. We look forward to a series of celebrations throughout the 2017 season, and another ten years of further growth.”
All participating vendors self-produce or offer regionally available agricultural, culinary, seafood and food-based products within a local Food shed of 150-mile radius of the Market location, and all of the State of Virginia. Each vendor must provide a full and honest disclosure concerning their product production as it pertains to growing and/or production methods, particularly in the case of products sold as ‘organic’ or from ‘sustainable sources’. Each vendor must adhere to high ethical standards in terms of product measuring and pricing.
Patrons and visitors of the Old Beach Farmers’ Market are invited to combine shopping local and enjoying a series of 10 celebratory events that will run through November 2017. Additionally, visitors to the Old Beach Farmers’ Market are encouraged to explore the art and creative businesses found in the ViBe Creative District neighborhood surrounding the markets.
Event #1 – Kick-off event – Saturday, May 27th
Event theme: We’re a 10 – Feel like one.
Mayor Will Sessoms is set to kick off the celebration at 10 a.m. Come and enjoy cupcakes baked by our vendor, My Vegan Sweet Tooth, right after the mayor’s speech for a sweet and healthy celebration while School of Rocks will be adding live entertainment to this celebration with two 30-minute performances at 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.
Event #2 – June 10th
Event Theme: We’re a 10 – Let’s “Produce” a 10- Foot Long Piece of Art
We are celebrating National Fresh Fruit and Veggie Month and celebrating it in all of its glory. Local artist Heather Donis will bring her talent to bear by creating a community art piece that she will produce with the Old Beach Farmers’ Market patrons. This public art painting will celebrate National Fresh Fruit and Veggie Month and will later on be moved to the ViBe’s murals’ wall in 18th Street Parklet.
Event #3: June 24th:
Event Theme: We’re a 10 – Eat like a 10!
We are kicking off the summer and celebrating our meat and seafood vendors. Come and enjoy free samples of our products and select your favorite variety of locally grown or caught meat and seafood. Enjoy artist Alyssa Corbin from Lyssa’s Little Buddies (@lyssaslittlebuddies) and join the celebration where you can get your face painting and enjoy temporary tattoos.
Event #4 – July 16th
Event Theme: We’re a 10 & Let’s sauce it up!
We are celebrating our numerous vendors offering various types of sauces. Enjoy their delicious products and free samples. In honor of World Watercolor Month, we will also be hosting a “plein air” watercolor painting circle with local artists who will share their passion for the arts by offering painting demonstrations.
Event #5 – July 29th
Event’s Theme: We’re a 10 and tomatoes are our inspiration ingredient
In honor of National Culinary Month, we will be celebrating our fresh and seasonal tomatoes as the inspiration for your weekly upcoming menu. Come and mingle with our vendors to learn more about the many ways you may use this sweet produce in your own creations.
Event #6 – August 12th
Event Theme: We’re a 10 & Life is a picnic!
On August 12th, we will be celebrating National Farmers’ Market Week (August 7th – 13th, 2017. Visit our vendors and purchase your picnic food to enjoy on-site in our picnic areas specially set up for this event.
Event #7 – August 26th
Theme Event: We’re a 10 – How Sweet it is
Celebrate our baked good vendors and indulge in their sweets.
Event #8 – September 16
Theme Event: We’re a 10 – Yappy hours at 10 a.m. with your four legged-friends
On September 16th, we will be celebrating National Farm Awareness Week taking place from September 17th – 24th. Visit the Old Beach Farmers’ Market with your beloved furry four-legged friend who will be the star of the day. Come and enjoy our “yappy parade” at 10 a.m. while enjoying our petting zoo.
Event #9 – October 21st
Event Theme: We’re a 10 – Who gets a 10 – Pumpkin pie contest
We will be celebrating the fall harvest during the Eat Better, Eat Together Month with local pumpkins as the prime stars. Be part of our local pumpkin pie contest to take place at 10:30 a.m. while enjoying a Virginia wine on the patio of Croc’s 19th Street Bistro.
Event #10 – November 18th
Event Theme: We’re a 10 – Thank you for 10 years and 10 more to come
We will be celebrating our patrons and small businesses. Come and get a head start on Small Business Saturday while enjoying apple cider samples to keep you warm.
The ViBe Creative District is happy to partner with and support the Old Beach Farmers’ Markets as they celebrate this milestone anniversary. The non-profits will team up on several occasions throughout the “We’re a 10” events series to offer the public opportunities to explore hands-on art projects as well as live performing arts.
The Farmers’ Market laid the ground work by bringing thousands of people to the central beach resort area and by promoting the culinary arts. We are proud to see local businesses within the ViBe that were incubated from the Old Beach Farmers Market—the perfect example being Three Ships Coffee which began as a simple table display during the weekend market and has grown to a flagship ViBe business on 19th Street.