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First Cedar Rapids Farmers Market of 2021 draws large crowd downtown

Updated: Jun. 19, 2021 at 6:16 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -The Cedar Rapids Farmers Market returned Saturday morning in person for the first time in two years. The market was a drive-thru event last year because of the pandemic.

The Cedar Rapids Farmers Market brings thousands of people downtown, like Becca Nims and her dog Meeko from Cedar Rapids.

“Living down here downtown it was very quiet last year, so it’s nice to have activity again,” says Nims.

Aydin Laughridge grew up frequenting the farmers market. She says she’s thrilled to be back walking from stand to stand this year.

“I love farmers markets, I always have. I’ve been coming basically my whole life,” says Laughridge, “I missed them so much.”

Tim Palmer, aka The Salsa Guy, is one of 100 vendors excited to be back downtown for the summer season. He says his regular customers are just as ready to be back.

“For the last couple months I’ve had people chase me in stores, flagging me down saying, breakfast burritos, is this the year,” says Palmer.

Ready to see customers face to face, making up for lost time and lost revenue.

”This was a huge gut punch last year to have that loss of revenue, and then have the derecho on top of it. We’re like a lot of other businesses where we’re just eating the elephant one bite at a time. And having all my best customers back here at the market, this is awesome,” says Palmer. “Cedar Rapids is just showing up, they are so excited to get back to the market and we’re glad to be here.”

This year, vendors set up their stands in a loop downtown, all on one side of the street, giving people more space and keeping everyone moving in the same direction.

The farmer’s markets will begin at 7:30 a.m. and go until noon. There will be markets held on June 19, July 3, July 17, August 7, August 21, September 4, September 18, and October 2nd.

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