Fresh on the plaza

On any given Saturday morning – between May and October, from 8 to 11 a.m. – City Hall Plaza is teeming with people. The Webster City Farmers Market brings out many local residents looking for fresh produce, farm-fresh eggs, home-baked breads and treats and specialty craft items.

Canopies and tables surround the plaza and nearby parking lot.

The market also has social feel as regular vendors greet customers who return every weekend for more fresh produce. Many of the vendors have a long history at the farmers market.

Sonya Burney, along with her mom Joyce Harms, has been selling baked goods at the farmers market for four years. They call themselves “The Kringla Ladies” and offer that Scandinavian treat in several flavors along with cookies and other sweets.

“I like seeing all the regulars and it’s been fun getting to know the other vendors,” she said.

But the vendors say there’s always room for more sellers. Scarlette Zompa said she’s seen an increase in the number and types of vendors over the past couple of years.

“I’ve been doing this three or four years and have seen the number of vendors grow. We have more consistent vendors now which brings bigger crowds,” she said. “So the more the merrier.”

Zompa is a baker and brings fresh breads, cookies and other items each Saturday morning.

“I love to bake and I love being out here,” she said.

Each week, the produce vendors bring in new selections of items as fruits and vegetables reach their seasonal peak. Last Saturday, vendors bagged up kohlrabi, snap peas, cucumbers, zucchini and other fresh-picked items. Time for sweet corn and tomatoes is just around the corner, said one vendor.

Colin Ryan was selling fresh eggs from free-range chickens Saturday morning. What started as a 4-H project has continued, he said. His signs say the eggs were produced by Hamilton County Fair Champions.

“Last year, I was out here every Saturday,” he said. “This year, I’ve been a little busier so this is actually my first time out.”

The Bailey family, with their Boone River Rustix creations, is one of the newest vendors at the Farmers Market.

“It started out with us making some trellises for ourselves and people said, ‘Hey, you sell those at the farmers market,'” said Kent Bailey. His wife Milissa and daughter Emma were helping in the booth Saturday.

The booth sells trellises, stars, plant markers, tables and other garden items, all made from twigs and sticks.

“It’s been fun,” he said.

Vendors wishing to take part in the Saturday farmers markets can still register at City Hall. The farmers market has also been open on the Friday nights when Webster City’s Summer Nights celebrations have been held.