There’s a new morning market next to the Onion Creek Café every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from the looks of things on a recent Sunday, the emphasis is less on fresh produce and more on artisans and their wares.
That being said, the Heights Morning Market is still evolving.
Jessica Ivins is responsible for coordinating the market in conjunction with Onion Creek Café. Ivins is a marketing consultant under the name, Edgesetter LLC, and works with The Creek Group.
She says that they use different avenues to find local vendors, such as social media, Google search, and other market directories.
“We look for vendors that we believe would fit the demographics of the area, and then I reach out to them and invite them to apply,” said Ivins. “I also try to get as much feedback from customers so I can learn what types of products they would be interested in buying weekly and I focus my search.”
To Ivins, a variety is what makes a market successful, local being key.
“I think a good mix of gourmet goods, groceries, fresh plants and flowers, and artisan products is important and [getting] items you can’t just go to the store and buy or order off of Amazon,” she said.
Jeannine Peace of JPeace Designs is one such vendor. She says that she grew up in a family of working artists and has been acquiring vintage beads for years.
“I’ve been making jewelry since I was 10 years old,” said Peace.
Edward Charles Holtgraver used to be a wedding photographer before he started Wonders of Nature, selling coasters, tiles, and prints of his nature shots.
“I did the Blue Field Market [in EaDo] where I heard about this,” he said. “I’ve been doing markets for three years.”
Angela Harris Cannizzo is the owner of La Lydia Gift 2 Give, a unique, local garden boutique. Her specialty is crafting nature into repurposed, new again containers and modern planters. She also specializes in small-space gardening and DIY planting parties.
“We will be at the market three times a month,” said Cannizzo.
Cultured Heat is the brain child of Heights residents Francesco Conti and Mandy Trichell. They make their small batch hot sauce with produce from local vendors in kitchen space they sublet from Alli Jarrett of Harold’s Restaurant.
“Alli is a great supporter of local businesses,” said Conti.
Acquiring vendors is one thing. Having enough space for them is another consideration. Ivins said that Onion Creek has space for up to 29 vendors, in addition to maintaining a parking lot for customers.
Gary Mosley, who owns the Creek Group, had a farmer’s market in the same parking lot that started in 2003.
“His goal was to connect the local businesses with the community and the Heights Morning Market is continuing that tradition,” said Ivins.
It is Ivins’ hope that the Sunday market becomes a routine activity for the residents.
“We want Sundays to be the day that people look forward to for shopping local and ‘brunching’ at a Heights staple, the Onion Creek Café,” she said.