Market History

History of the Morris Area Farmers Market

Morris has been home to a farmers market since 1975.  Some of the vendors who started the Morris Area Farmers Market (MAFM) continue as vendors today.  Joyce Pieske served as the Stevens County Farmers Market coordinator from the market’s inception to 2009.

The Morris Healthy Eating Community Food Assessment documented the strong desire from farmers market vendors, customers and the Morris community to have an expanded and robust farmers market.  Morris community citizens emphasized that a thriving farmers market is a useful and preferred means of increasing availability of locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables in season.  MAFM became a collaborating partner with Morris Healthy Eating in 2009.

In early 2010, the market named a new coordinator, Paula Feuchtenberger, and became the Morris Area Farmers Market.  The location of the market was changed to 801 Atlantic Avenue (the Aaron Carlson Parking Lot).  The 2010 market opened in mid-June, the earliest opening day in its history.  Morris Healthy Eating hosted a booth each day of the 2010 and 2011 market seasons, and served as a communication and information center for the Morris Area Farmers Market.

A collaborative Healthy Communities for Healthy Living grant funded through the Minnesota Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP) helped the Morris Area Farmers Market achieve much greater visibility through improved signage and advertising.  Buy Fresh Buy Local initiative materials gave the market a fresh look, customized to the Upper Minnesota River Valley, yet consistent with the national campaign.  The Buy Fresh Buy Local logo was designed and translated into the Spanish language with the assistance of University of Minnesota students, faculty and staff.

In the past few years, the market has grown immensely, from four vendors in the early days to 23 vendors during the 2011 season.  2011 also included a chef’s demonstration at the market, using local ingredients purchased from our vendors. In 2012 we moved to East Side Park.  2015  brought yet another change in location to Morris Public Library Square. This 2016 season kicks off on June 16th in the same location; Morris Public Library Square.  We hope you will shop the market and help us continue to grow in the coming years!