“We reached this extraordinarily tough conclusion in the face of a dwindling number of vendors attending our weekly Hayground Farmers Market,” Hayground School Treasurer Tony Hitchcock says, adding, “This decision was further reinforced by the departure of our Market Manager Ella Engel-Snow who, following several years of tremendous service, is leaving to pursue other interests.”
Originally founded in 2009 by Hayground School’s Jon Snow to create a venue for kids to sell produce and seedlings grown in the school’s garden, the idea was to develop a Friday afternoon market where folks would be more likely to linger and socialize while shopping for local food and products, Hayground explains in the announcement canceling their market on Monday.
Once the concept came to fruition, Hayground reached out to like-minded fishermen, farmers, vintners and other home-grown producers. Soon, the market became the “summer town square” of Bridgehampton on Fridays. Community groups were encouraged to have a presence and, on many weeks, the market included extra attractions such as live music, readings by local authors or a talk by a local resident.
“The Hayground Farmers Market began as a learning tool for our students, and grew into a weekly community gathering that embodied the familial and farm-to-table nature of our East End and Hayground communities,” Snow reflects. “We’re all so grateful to our vendors, regulars and kids for making the seed of a dream into such a fantastic reality.”
Though their farmers market will no longer continue, the Hayground community is urging its loyal farmers market shoppers to continue to support local farm stands and visit the many East End farmers markets that continue to service the Twin Forks, including the markets in East Hampton, Springs, Sag Harbor, Montauk, Westhampton, Hampton Bays, Greenport and Shelter Island.