A New Farmers Market and a New Co-op Make News for the New Year

There’s potentially good food news for two Twin Cities communities in 2010: a new farmer’s market and a new food co-op.

According to the Star Tribune, Edina may finally get its own farmer’s market, “if a proposal that's going to the Edina Park Board in January makes its way through city review processes in time.”

Strib reporter Mary Jane Smetanka writes, “The idea of adding an Edina farmers market came out of a two-year, $1.6 million grant that was received by Bloomington, Richfield and Edina. The Statewide Health Improvement Program grant came from the state health access fund, funded by a fee paid by health care providers. The money goes to activities that are aimed at promoting health.”

She includes a quote by John Keprios, the city's park and recreation director: "It would help create a sense of community [emphasis mine], which really fits with our mission well -- creating community through people, parks and programs."

The other news is that after almost five years of stops and starts, the long-awaited Orono/Long Lake co-op, Harvest Moon, is on track to open in early 2010. In an e-mail sent to Harvest Moon members, the co-op announced the hiring of its first general manager. Peter Doolan, formerly merchandise manager of Linden Hills co-op, will “head and manager all aspects of the store’s operations and assemble a team of managers and employees.” Here’s his quote: “I am very honored and excited to be given the opportunity to be the first general manager of Harvest Moon co-op. The Orono/Long Lake community is an ideal place to bring healthy food options with a local emphasis and to build a store that will become a community centerpiece [emphasis mine].”

I’ve tried to draw your attention to the emphasis on community in both Keprios’s and Doolan’s quotes. Building community, I think, is one of the great benefits of the local, sustainable food movement, and one we don’t talk about enough. That’s why I will dedicate tomorrow’s blog post to that very subject.

FYI... the Edina Park Board will meet on Tuesday, January 12, at 7:00 p.m. at City Hall, 4801 W. 50th Street, Edina. And Harvest Moon is still looking for founding members/owners for $175 each.