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Croton’s Community Market

Croton-on-Hudson has a new farmers market in town. Although it appears to be a stand-alone, it is really part of a larger community of markets.  In fact, Community Markets is an umbrella organization which has dedicated itself to creating local markets for organic, sustainable food – – produce, honeys, and meats. These markets are scattered all across Westchester and at the time of this writing, there are nine in the county and two in Rockland. Others exist outside of the area.

Croton Market

The market in Croton which is open on Wednesdays from 2PM – 7PM is working out the kinks. Parking is one of the biggest knots to be rectified. I find it puzzling that two uniformed, gun carrying trained officers are utilized to direct parking at a small lot market in Croton? This clearly is a waste of the community’s valuable resources. When I mentioned to the officer that it would be nice if people could park across the street by the Chase bank, which has ample space, he replied, “Oh you can.”  I pointed out that signs indicate the need for a parking permit or risk a tow/fine. He then chuckled and said, “When this market is open, you can park there.”

The frustration here about a market that should be welcomed with open arms is the lack of attention to operational details. I guess shoppers are to assume they can park in the forbidden lot since there is no signage whatsoever, nor did any officer directing the crazed mix of cars backing-up and pedestrians navigating their way into the space mention its open availability.

The market has potential. You may be a bit accosted trying to enter the chain linked small space to find your fresh produce with people attempting to hand you flyers, brochures, notices and the like. To the effort and spirit of such a market, stop killing the trees, and post a website for those interested. Consumers should be able to opt-in, and not be forced to stop, and say, “No, thank you” every few feet.

There are a few stands of fresh produce, and a recent offering of freshly picked cherries was delicious. Cherries

The pickle guys are a funny/hardy sort and their products including sauerkraut are done well.

There is local honey sold there, which is a good remedy for your local allergies.

If you are a fan of nut butters, one vendor sells plenty and they are delicious!Nut Butters

Another stand sells and provides tastings of wine from Millbrook Vineyards & Winery. In addition, the stand operator was providing tastings of cold pressed olive oil. The oil, which is quite nice, sells for $25 per 500mL. There is just one problem, she had none to sell. So once again, the shopper is teased with a taste and there is none available? Put it away and bring it out when you’re ready to play.

Bread Alone

Where would we be without the wonderful breads from Bread Alone‘s Dan Leader. This Catskill staple is a welcome addition to the market and his products remain consistent.

Chicken Pot Pies

In a nutshell, the market is a new neighbor that hopefully will stay awhile, and be kind to the community in every aspect. However, the physical shopping space is too limiting and lacks potential for successful expansion, the parking issue is only going to get worse once people find out about it – – that is, if you can actually make it on a Wednesday between two and seven – – oh, perhaps you work for a living? So this market may not be for you.

Give it a go, and let us know your thoughts.

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