Celebrating Earth Day in Halifax looked a lot different this year for what would have been its 12th annual Earth Day Extravaganza, but organizers were pleased with the scaled-back drive-thru held Saturday at the Halifax Farmers Market.
Not only did they have 88 cars roll through to pick up Earth Day bags full of activities for families including a bird feeder kit, but town of Halifax assistant manager Denise Barksdale said some produce was sold out in the first hour.
“We can’t complain about that at all,” said Barksdale. “Overall, we were very pleased with the turnout.”
And, they were so pleased with the turnout, the vendors plan to return next week to keep the drive thru market going.
It was different Saturday servicing customers from their car while wearing face masks and gloves, but vendors were simply happy to be able to be back at the market.
“We wanted to try to be as safe as possible while providing an outlet for farmers to be able to move their products. They plan to be there every weekend going forward,” said Barksdale.
She explained there is such a demand right now for produce as well as safe way to shop that keeps customers out of big box stores.
“They can still move their products while practicing social distancing,” she added.
Not only did it give vendors a chance to sell, but it gave them a chance to continue to celebrate Earth Day while providing activities for the whole family to enjoy.
Families received a bird feeder kit, a goodie bag full of snacks, a bottle of water, a book mark and more as well as wildflower seeds, a coloring packet and packet of activities, recipes and other information regarding the coronavirus and the farmers market for parents.
“It’s important to still try to highlight and celebrate Earth Day,” said Barksdale. “We wanted to remind people to be conscientious about what they do and don’t do, and to remind people to recycle and reuse whenever they can. Even though we couldn’t do the full line up, we were still able to remind everyone to do their part.”
The assistant town manager also thought the Earth Day drive-thru market was a great way to kick off Virginia Farmers Week, which starts Monday.
Virginia Farmers Week runs from April 27 to May 3 to encourage Virginians to shop local at farmers market.
Also starting next Saturday, Barksdale said the farmers market would start participating in the Virginia Fresh Match program, which sponsors “double bucks” for SNAP clients.
Barksdale explained that when SNAP clients purchase at the market using their benefits, their purchase would be matched.
Looking back at this past Saturday, Barksdale said she would like to thank the Halifax Police Department, the town of Halifax staff, vendors and volunteers for making it possible.
“We wanted to keep everyone safe, and that wouldn’t have been possible without everyone’s help,” Barksdale concluded.