Patrons harvest local produce at Montevallo market

Despite a humid, hot Alabama summer day, dozens of local residents flocked to Montevallo’s first-ever farmers’ market June 7 to get a taste of some locally grown produce.

The June 7 event marked the city’s first market, which will be held every Monday afternoon in June and July from 3-6 p.m. at the corner of Boundary Street and Island Street behind Regions Bank.

Each week, the market will feature local farmers and gardeners selling everything from okra to squash. Every market will feature live entertainment from local groups like the Wilson Hill Band, which played during the June 7 market.

“We had a huge rush right when we opened today,” Montevallo Chamber of Commerce President Mary Lou Williams, who worked to organize the market, said about an hour after the market opened for business. “And the crowd is still pretty large. All of the vendors seem to be very happy right now.

“There is a really good cross-section of people out here too,” Williams added as she looked on at a crowd of college students, teachers, Montevallo residents and visitors. “I’ve gotten a great response from everyone. Several people have come up to me and said ‘thank you for making this happen.'”

Luke Johnson, with the Leeds-based Stone Oak Farms, said he was enjoying the turnout, and praised the event’s organizers.

“I’m glad to be out here. This has really turned out well,” Johnson said. “It’s an excellent event, and it’s been very well-promoted.”

The markets are sponsored by Regions Bank, and all Montevallo farmers’ market events are supported by the Alabama Farmers’ Market Authority.

“The Montevallo Chamber of Commerce has developed the project to provide a source of locally grown fruits, vegetables and plants to the community, and to bring shoppers to the downtown area,” Williams said. “We could not have done this without the support of the Alabama Farmers’ Market Authority.”

Anyone interested in visiting or participating in the market should call the Chamber of Commerce at 665-1519, or e-mail montevallocc@bellsouth.net.