Vendor applications are
being solicited for the Tuesday night Sonoma Plaza Farmers’ Market, scheduled
to open this year on May 6th. The Board of Directors of the Valley
of the Moon Certified Farmers’ Market (VOMCFM) encourages all interested
vendors to submit their applications by this year’s application deadline, which
is Saturday, March 1, 2014. The VOMCFM Vendor Selection Committee then
evaluates and scores all applications during the month of March, and applicants
will be notified whether they have been accepted during the first week of
Local farmers, food purveyors, artisans and service providers are encouraged to apply. “Every year, we have more applications than available spaces,” says Bill Dardon, VOMCFM Board President. “Although many vendors reapply and are accepted again, we evaluate all applicants each year, and we always accept some new vendors.” The Board strives to select a balanced mix of vendors that supports local farms and businesses, while also considering the changing and evolving trends and tastes of the community. In particular, Dardon stresses, they are always hoping for and seeking new farmers. “We are, first and foremost, a Farmers’ Market,” he explains.
for the Market are available on the Market’s website, www.sonomaplazamarket.org.
Prospective applicants can navigate to the “Vendors” page, and then select the appropriate
application form. Three different applications are available for “Farmer,”
“Food,” and “Artisan,” plus a separate application for non-profit organizations.
According to Market Manager Christopher Welch, all application forms have been
revised and improved for 2014. A $35 application processing fee is required
with all applications, but not for non-profits. Applicants can mail in their
applications or deliver them to the VOMCFM office at 34 W. Spain Street, inside
Coldwell Banker Brokers of the Valley.
Manager Welch stresses that it’s important that all applications are as
complete and detailed as possible, to make a positive impression and convey the
uniqueness and appropriateness of the vendor’s product or service. Welch
explains that the Vendor Selection Committee uses a point-based scoring system
to objectively evaluate each application based on a number of factors,
including how local the business is, participation in prior years’ markets, locally-sourced
and/or sustainable ingredients, etc.
Tuesday Farmers’ Market has been in existence for over 25 years, with Valley of
the Moon Certified Farmers’ Market assuming management responsibilities in
2011, renewing the focus on providing a sustainable outlet for local farmers to
sell their products directly to Sonoma citizens and area visitors. The 2014
Tuesday Night Market opens May 6 and continues every week through October 28.