California State University, Long Beach
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Farmers’ Market A Success; Two More Scheduled For April, May

Published: April 15, 2013

On March 27, the first-ever farmers’ market at CSULB took place just outside the Student Recreation and Wellness Center plaza. The Associated Students Inc. (ASI) Special Events Commission hosted the event, partnering with 49er Shops Inc. and L.A. City Farm, to bring in a dozen vendors along with free giveaways and music.

“The idea came about last September from our ASI president (John Haberstroh) and vice president (Jonathon Bolin) and they passed it on to our Special Events Commission and our ASI Special Events Commissioner Chantal Stamp,” said ASI Communications Coordinator Christina Esparza. “Chantal did most of the heavy lifting on this project and got the contracts from the vendors. It took a while, but it was a huge success.”

farmers market stall

Because of that popularity, two additional farmers’ market events are scheduled on campus this spring—April 24 and May 8—both running from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Although some vendors may be able to accommodate debit/credit cards, it is suggested that customers bring cash.

Among the items vendors provided were fresh fruits and juices, vegetables and prepared foods such as chili and hummus. Some vendors on hand included Homeboy Bakery, Alex’s Fruits and Nuts, Pressed Juicery and Joe’s Produce.

“It was a major success and a lot of the vendors were saying that they were not expecting to do as well and some of them sold out of their product and they are definitely very excited to come back,” said Esparza. “They were really pleased. Some of them made more money at our farmers’ market then they had at larger ones.”

Farmers market
Crowds at the March 27 Farmers’ Market.

It is Bolin’s hope that, beginning in the fall, the farmers’ market will take place every two weeks at CSULB as a way to help students shop for groceries on campus.

“The farmers’ market was primarily for the students,” added Esparza. “It was an idea for the students by the students, but we got people from off campus coming in so it’s intended for the campus community as well. We’re not going to turn anybody away.”

Formed in 2008 by founder Nick Spano, L.A. City Farm’s goal is to make locally farmed organic produce and prepared foods more easily available to Southern Californian communities by supporting local farmers and encouraging a healthier quality of life, as well as a more sustainable culture. The organization provides vendors for The Autry, CSULB, Eagle Rock, South Bay Pavilion, Warner Bros. Studios and Yamashiro farmers’ markets in and around the Los Angeles area.

For more information, contact Beach Pride Programs at 562/985-2535.

–Shayne Schroeder