By Jeff Noble / Staff Writer
The long-awaited season opening for the Whitley County Farmers’ Market in downtown Corbin is set for Tuesday.
After a highly successful first season last year, officials with the Farmers’ Market and the Downtown Corbin organization eagerly await Tuesday’s kickoff.
They’re also setting their sights for the following Tuesday, May 6, when the third annual “Chili Bowl” competition will be hosted by the Farmers’ Market and held at the market site.
This year, the market will be open in Corbin every Tuesday from 5-9 p.m. until October — the same day and time as last year.
By the way — there’s a new site this season for the Farmers’ Market in downtown Corbin.
It’ll be at Nibroc Park.
The park was chosen as the new home earlier this week.
Its location — at the corner of South Main and West 1st Street, across from the Whitaker Bank building — is about a block-and-a-half south of last year’s location, at the corner of South Main and West Monroe Street.
Downtown Corbin’s Director Andy Salmons pointed out the Nibroc Park location will make an accomodating home to the Farmers’ Market.
“The new location will work out really well. There’s power and water down there for those setting up, there’s trees for shade, there’s grass on the ground and all of it will make for a pleasing atmosphere for visitors and vendors,” he said.
While looking forward to this season’s opening, Salmons gave thanks to the Corbin Tourism and Convention Commission, which owns the property where the Farmers’ Market was last year.
“We are very grateful for Corbin Tourism for letting us use the space last year. They really helped us get off the ground,” he added.
Salmons noted the selling of locally grown produce and freshly made foods, along with the festive, laid-back atmosphere, made for a satisfying experience for many people.
“Several of your favorite vendors from last year, and some new vendors for this year, will all be in one location. The band, ‘Kites’ will be performing Tuesday when we open up the Farmers’ Market’s regular season, and we’re really excited about the market in downtown Corbin this year. We can’t wait,” said Salmons.
A local folk-rock band with a big following in the Tri-County region and beyond, “Kites” played last year at the Farmers’ Market’s inaugural “Taste of the Market” event, held in late July.
This year’s “Taste of the Market” — the second annual one — will be July 29 at Nibroc Park.
While the Farmers’ Market’s season opener is Tuesday, Salmons mentioned there’s already excitement the following Tuesday, May 6, when the third annual “Chili Bowl” competition also be at the market.
“Anybody’s welcome to register and submit their chili. We’ll have the chili tasting at 6 p.m. There’s two categories. People will submit their chili and we’ll judge that, and they can also decorate their tables which will be judged on the way their tables look. Anybody can participate in the Chili Bowl, and nothing’s changed with the Chili Bowl over the last two years. The only difference this year is that the event will be hosted by the Whitley County Farmers’ Market,” he mentioned.
Registration forms for this year’s Chili Bowl can be found on the Downtown Corbin site on Facebook. You can also email Downtown Corbin for a registration form at email@example.com, and they’ll send one to your email address. And forms can be picked up at Corbin City Hall.
More on Downtown Corbin’s 2014 events can be found at their Facebook page.
Along with the new Corbin location at Nibroc Park on Tuesdays from 5-9 p.m. through October, the Whitley County Farmers’ Market also has locations in Williamsburg and Goldbug. The Goldbug location at the Whitley County Extension Office on U.S. 25W (near Exit 15 of I-75) is open Saturdays from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. The Williamsburg location is in a new place, in Bill Woods Park on Chestnut Street, and is open Wednesdays during the afternoon hours.