A farmers’ market end–of-season update was the only item of new business on the agenda for the Wrightsville Beach Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee meeting Monday, Sept. 10.
Farmers’ market manager Angela Cannon said the season went well even though it was pretty wet. Rain and even the threat of rain have a big affect on farmers’ markets and attendance, she said.
“Overall I would say that attendance is up from last year, not by leaps and bounds, but up,” Cannon said.
Farmers’ markets in all areas are slowing down as the trend of shopping at the farmers’ market wears down and as grocery stores are now offering local, organic produce, Cannon said.
Her goal is to get as much produce in the market as possible, but after the topic of the possible new location for the farmers’ market surfaced, Cannon said she would like to see craft vendors come before the board again after it was previously shot down.
“They didn’t understand that crafters doesn’t mean T-shirts and glitter,” she said.
The additional space at the proposed location in the field across from the former fire station would require more vendors, Cannon said.
But the first step will be for the market location to go before the board, and if it does not get past that point then craft vendors do not need to be considered.
Katie Ryan, recreation program supervisor, reminded committee members to fill out their surveys for the Wrightsville Beach Community Transportation Plan and said she would email -members the Parks and Recreation Master Plan.
Ryan presented a program update and said the afterschool program is almost full with 24 children.
“All of our programs this year have done really well,” Ryan said, adding that cross-training started Monday and hip-hop began Wednesday.
Figuring out a payment system or process for the fitness classes is in the works. The problem with the current method is that it utilizes the honor system and sometimes the number of tokens or people signed in does not match the number of class participants, Ryan said.
“Maybe there’s some way we can offer all of the classes and you pay a monthly fee,” she said.
In other business, member Jim Mincher said he has now counted the bike locks in town twice, once before and once on Labor Day. He found about one-sixth of the bikes were locked to the rings and the rest were locked elsewhere.
“That’s just what it was,” he said. “I’m not saying it’s good or bad or anything.”
Mincher said the main problem is fences overgrown with leaves and vines. He took pictures of the problem areas and said that repositioning the rings and signs nearby would help fix the problem.