First and foremost, thanks to our amazing shoppers! We've watched your families grow, adding new members (on two legs & four) and sending those we knew as children off to college. You shop with us in all weather and make local food part of your family values. The Market cannot happen without your support. We appreciate being a delicious part of your weekly routine, and we can't wait to see you on opening day, April 11, 2015.
I'm thrilled that we have been able to continue to serve a broader community this year through both our Wholesome Wave Georgia SNAP program and our new partnership with Meals on Wheels. Wholesome Wave allows us to double food stamp benefits at the Market, making fresh local foods more accessible. Our partnership with Meals on Wheels has been the perfect circle of giving. Amazing chefs like Thomas McKeown at The Grand Hyatt Buckhead, Jenn Robbins of Avalon Catering, and Nick Leahy of Saltyard did Chef Popups to raise funds for Meals on Wheels to buy veggies remaining at the end of Market. These purchases provide seniors with additional fresh vegetable servings.
The Market could not happen without the incredible hospitality of The Cathedral of St. Philip. While the Market is self-sustaining, the Cathedral offers a home to us indoors and out during the week and on Saturdays. The values of grace, hospitality and excellence are inherent in all we do. As Dean Sam Candler always says "we don't need a big Sunday coffee hour. We have one each Saturday!"
Our generous sponsor Country Financial has done so much more than provide a donation to the Market. They have become a part of our community through the high school bag contest, support of our Sunday Supper, and as a regular part of our Market. Whole Foods Market Buckhead has supported us for years by supplying staples for the chef demos unavailable at the Market as well as drinks at our information tent.
Huge thanks to all our chef demo chefs, who not only teach us how to cook each week, but support the farmers at their restaurants. I especially want to thank two chefs, who have personally and professionally gone above and beyond for the Market this year: Chef Thomas McKeown of The Grand Hyatt Buckhead and Chef Jenn Robbins of Avalon Catering. They've served at the Sunday Supper, done Chef Popups, served our vendor appreciation breakfast, and most of all bought out the occasional bumper crops from our farmers. Our gratitude to these chefs is measured in grit bowls served and veggies bought.
Your Market is special and unique because of the committed farmers, growers, food creators and artists that come rain or shine each week. All these incredible and talented small business owners fill our plates not just with food but with love.
Appreciation goes to our volunteers that make the market shine. The weekly newsletter, blog, website, chef demo sound/videos and food assistance, tent and table setup, receipt-taking, garbage cleanup, and the friendly information tent services are all compliments of an incredible team that volunteers an estimated 100 hours a week. Bo, Sara, and I are so lucky to serve not just the vendors, but you our shoppers and the local food community!
I hope you count the Market among the things for which you are grateful as well. Please consider PRFM in your year-end giving. Donations can be made securely online through the Cathedral's website at https://stphilipscathedral.securegive.com. You need to create a quick account, select Donations, and then choose Farmers Market.
Your Market Manager