Jenny Callahan still is a bit beside herself. She envisioned a successful Farmers’ Market in Flandreau over the course of the past few months, and of creating a unique and inviting community space where makers and growers could sell to those looking for quality products made locally. She just wasn’t sure how many others were as well.
This past Thursday, however, as the market wrapped up for the season, hundreds turned out to shop, eat and gather in the downtown area next to the Moody County Courthouse. Thirty vendors, two food trucks, a fall photo booth, horse carriage rides and three live music performances took part in the Market’s first Fall Festival.
“I can not express enough gratitude to everyone that had the smallest impact to the largest impact of making the Fall Festival a huge success,” said Callahan. “When Thad (Drietz) started playing the National Anthem and everyone stopped, put their hand on their heart and turned toward the Courthouse flag, that was the moment that made me realize all the time spent on the planning was well worth it in the end. For that moment, every single person on the block was united, it was pretty amazing. Bringing the community together, seeing that people were out on the town, seeing people reuniting with old friends, this is what the Flandreau Farmers’ Market is all about, being a friendly place to gather and share talents.”
Callahan believes over 800 people attended, quite a few were from out of town.
Fawn Rustand brought her daughter over from Luverne, Minnesota. “It was very nice! We’ve been following it on Facebook and I finally had a Thursday night off so I thought, we’re going here, and of course, Mad Mary’s afterwards.” She and her daughter bought decor, vegetables, towels, some meat and some snacks. Luverne, she said, has a Farmer’s Market but they’ve never been to it.
Adam Day, a local who has moved away from the area, returned from North Sioux City with his wife and newborn and picked this weekend to be here because of the Fall Festival. “End of August when they started pushing it, we knew this weekend would be one we’d want to come up for,” said Day.
Enjoying a piece of candy she never would have discovered otherwise from the local store Gone2Pieces, 9-year-old Sasha Bien said her favorite part of the night was the wagon rides.
“I tried to put it into words when it was over,” said Callahan, reflecting on the event. “The only word I could use to describe the night was: Incredible! It was a very fun night for everyone involved.”
Callahan said that the Flandreau Farmers’ Market isn’t just a one night deal, it will be back next year — most likely every Thursday night through the summer, on the courthouse lawn. Watch for updates on the Flandreau Farmer’s Market Facebook Group page. “Thank you to everyone that supported and attended the market and the festival.”