[Guest Post] Woodfin Y Winter Market: Using Local Food to Grow Healthier Communities

The Neighborhood Y at Woodfin Reynolds Mountain Winter Tailgate Market will kick off the winter market season this Saturday, January 5. (Find a list and schedule of WNC winter markets HERE.) With the new tailgate entering its second season, we asked coordinator Diane Saccone to look back at the market’s first year and to share what’s in store for 2013! 

Guest post courtesy of Diane Saccone, Healthy Living Coordinator for the Neighborhood Y at Woodfin: Using Local Food to Grow Healthier Communities

The concept of an indoor winter tailgate market at the Y began with a conversation between Stephen Roberson, owner of East Fork Farm, and myself in his living room on a cold and snowy January morning early in 2012. He was very concerned about making it through the winter with the rising cost of feed and limited places to sell his product.
At the time, Steven and five other growers were sitting in the parking lot at UNC Asheville on Saturday mornings in the hopes they would be able to sell their products to get through the lean months of winter. Hearing their story inspired me to help these and any other growers that wished to participate in an indoor market experiment at the Neighborhood Y at Woodfin and educate the community about the need to continue to support growers year-round.
The market opened February 4, 2012. People used to shopping locally were able to continue to support local growers. The farms and vendors that contributed to the market were instrumental in the revitalization of a field space in Woodfin that now is alive with activity. Financial gifts from the  growers who participated in the market directly made a difference in the lives of many in Northern Buncombe County, but we have much still to do.
Financial gifts from the 2013 winter market vendor fees will continue to support LIVESTRONG at the YMCA, an exercise program for cancer survivors, and the expansion of youth development programs and youth sports programming in Northern Buncombe County. Together, we will make great things happen in the community!
This year, we will continue to celebrate healthy living as we showcase local growers in our community featuring an array of fresh greens, produce, meats, fish, eggs, cheeses, pasta, bread, chocolates, coffee, value-added items and more! Here are the details:
When: Saturdays beginning January 5, 2013 (through spring when outdoor markets begin)
Time:  10 am-12:30 pm
Location: The LOFTS at Reynolds Village, Building 51, North Merrimon Ave., Woodfin, NC
For a list of market vendors, click HERE. For more information about the Winter Market, please contact Diane Saccone, Healthy Living Coordinator for the Neighborhood Y at Woodfin at: dsaccone@ymcawnc.org or 828-505-3990.

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