I'll Bite

Matthews farmers market is getting a little bigger

The crowded lanes (well, in summer, anyway) at the Matthews Community Farmers Market are getting ready to spread out a little.
The crowded lanes (well, in summer, anyway) at the Matthews Community Farmers Market are getting ready to spread out a little. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

Getting tired of elbowing your way through the popular Matthews Community Farmers’ Market? Expect a little more room when the market opens for spring on April 15.

Market manager Pauline Wood says they’re going to add a tailgate market in the grassy lot behind the market (the place where you test your driving skills to find parking). Having more room means they’ll add more farmers, bakers and specially food producers.

Since that will cut into the parking, Wood says you’ll be able to park on a town-owned lot on Charles Street, behind the Pita Kebab building (on Trade Street, go past the market and take a right on Charles), although some of the grassy lot will still be available for parking.

After a fund-raiser last year to improve the site, the market has already added a new chef-demo patio with a seating wall and has down a few things to tackle drainage at the original space, the open space a few doors down from Renfrow’s Hardware. They also are adding a hand-washing sink for both chefs and customers.

For add new vendor space, they’re regrading and resurfacing the grassy lot.

The Matthews Community Farmers’ Market is the grandparent of grower-only markets in the Charlotte area, with rules that sellers (with rare exceptions) have to grow or make what they sell themselves within 50 miles of Charlotte. The market is currently operating on its winter schedule, 8-10 a.m. Saturdays. After April 15, it returns to summer hours, 8 a.m.-noon Saturdays only.

Kathleen Purvis: 704-358-5236, @kathleenpurvis

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