About the Lansdowne Farmers Market
The mission of the Lansdowne Farmers Market (LFM), inaugurated in May, 2007 and open every Saturday from Memorial Day weekend to Halloween, is to “bring fresh, local food to Lansdowne; foster economic development in the Borough; promote Lansdowne and its events, businesses, artists, and musicians; and provide a community gathering place.”
The Market was created as an initiative of the Lansdowne Economic Development Corporation (LEDC), a non-profit community and economic development organization incorporated in 1998. In 2005, the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) designated the LEDC as a Pennsylvania Main Street program and provided funding to establish the Market as a means to help revitalize the downtown area. In 2006, as part of a special project grant from the William Penn Foundation, the LEDC was selected by The Food Trust to receive technical assistance in the creation of a locally operated farmers market. The following year, the Lansdowne Farmers Market was opened.
The LFM is planned, organized, and largely run by a committee of about 10 volunteers, with LEDC oversight. Market vendors have come through committee solicitation, advertisements, and word of mouth. Participating vendors have changed over the years, with priority given to local and returning businesses and with an overall goal of providing a broad shopping experience, both in merchandise and price.
Every Market features an Artist and a Musician of the Week, which opens the event to the local arts and culture community, and also provides live entertainment and new handcrafted products each week. To further engage area residents, groups, and interests, the LFM hosts special events throughout the season. We have three Community Days, during which extra spots are opened to local organizations, businesses, and private citizens for promotion and sales, plus two additional special events – Kidcentric Day and Dog Day —each season. Moreover, nonperishable foodstuffs are regularly collected at the Market to restock the local food bank.
Since the Market’s inception, the local community has embraced it, and the LFM has become a centerpiece of downtown revitalization. The LFM was second highest vote getter in the boutique market category of America’s Favorite Farmers Market Contest in 2010, as well as the second most popular farmers market in Pennsylvania. Campaigning politicians and even some celebrities have stopped by. In 2010, the first LFM T-shirts, featuring the slogan “Ripe & Ready,” were hand-printed by committee members on gently used shirts, meaning they combined Market promotion with both recycling and buying handmade, a harmonic convergence in our eyes. In 2011, the Market fundraiser was a put-it-together-yourself birdhouse with the LFM logo branded on the front, designed and made by two Lansdowne woodworkers. In 2012, we sold “Naturally Neighborly” patches, and in 2014, we began selling “Come Chill in Lansdowne” insulated bags that also promote various events around town.
The best friend you can be to the Market is to be a good shopper – come regularly and make purchases! Next best is spreading the word by telling friends, handing out LFM postcards or magnets, or displaying one of our lawn signs. And we can always use a hand setting up or breaking down. Stop by the Market Manager tent (right next to the musician tent) and say you want to help, and we’ll find something for you to do. Seriously, stop by; we’d love some help.