Updated: Jun 22, 2019
By Jasmine Willis
DANSVILLE — The debut of the weekend farmers’ market was a big success for the community and vendors.
Downtown Dansville Farmers’ Market is held on the corner of Elizabeth and Ossian streets on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Farmette Owner Kate Morrison and Glen Haven Farms Owner Kylie Smith came together to bring this new market to the village. They witnessed a strong need for a weekend market in the downtown area.
Jack and Kristine Gessner of Gessner’s Windy View Farms joined the farmers’ market for the first time.
“This started out as a 4-H project when I had pigs and cattle. Now in the last few years we have really grown. We have over 100 head now,” Kristine said. “We raise all the cows ourselves. We have gotten into doing USDA cuts in Pennsylvania (Sylvester Quality Meats) now. We have a butcher there who does it for us.”
The Wayland-based farm specializes in breeding stock and freezer beef.
“We will keep coming back here every Saturday for the farmers’ market until we sell out of our meats,” Kristine said.
Danielle Rider of Soulshine Pharm and Brian Rider of Soulshine Stones are a married couple who works to bring quality herbs, vegetables, and jewelry to the community.
“Soulshine has been our song since we got together, and we played it at our wedding. It means something to the both of us,” Danielle said. “We have been growing over the past 10 years together. My business is a year old now, and his is four years old. We have a large garden at home and a field in Sparta that we get our organic vegetables from.”
Danielle has some herbal based balms for poison ivy treatment and burn treatment available. She is looking to bring more herbal remedies in the future.
Also, Soulshine Pharm will have beets, carrots, peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and produce no one has ever seen before.
Brian gets the stones from all over the world and cuts them himself. He works on shaping and polishing them for the jewelry. Brian even works on cutting and shaping his own silver.
“I am completely self-taught. I make them all one of a kind,” he said. “I get a lot of people who want them custom made.”
Lucus Nice and Adam McIntosh have their own Natural Xtract business in Dansville. This New York City-based business manufactures and sells cannabinoids-rich hemp oil products containing naturally occurring cannabinoids. Nice and McIntosh are the first to bring this brand to Dansville area.
“It is good for sleeplessness, joint pain, nerve pain, neck pain, and back pain. The oils are good to put in teas or water,” Nice said. “This has all been tested and approved by an outside source. Adam and I have been working on this for about eight months now. Sara Werth from Deep Roots Massage is selling all of our products at her shop above Dansville ArtWorks right now.”
Nice said this kind of business has always been a growing passion of his and McIntosh’s.
“This has always been a passion of ours. We want to help heal Dansville one person at a time. This is what Dansville has always been about,” he said. “We started out with healing waters on the hillside. We want to carry on that tradition with our products.”
The price ranges depending on the CBD product are from $30 to $110. Nice and McIntosh had to travel back and forth to New York City several times to get the business off the ground.
“We are just building a strong foundation for our business right here,” Nice said. “What Kate and Kylie have done with this farmers’ market is phenomenal. It is much needed in this town.”
McIntosh said he and Nice have been friends for many years and decided to go into this business together in order to help people.
“I feel really great about this business. I think it is very beneficial to the community, and it is going to help a lot of people,” he said. “I have known Sara (Werth) for about 10 years now, and she has been a lot of help selling our products. They (NYC) wanted us to sell in Rochester, but I have been in Dansville my whole life. I wanted to sell in my hometown. I have that hometown pride, and I want to take care of my community first.”
Morrison said she is happy with the turnout they had for the first farmers’ market day.
“We have more vendors planning on coming next week. We have a really nice variety of vendors as well. We have herbs, beef venders, pork, lamb, chicken, produce, flowers, baked goods, and crafts. We plan on having live music every week,” she said. “We are going to bring kid-friendly events to the market. Brian Rider is planning on doing a demo for the Chalk Walk Festival. We are trying to coordinate with the First Friday events, so we can offer something more the next day.”
Morrison added that there was a huge interest in having a Saturday Farmers’ Market, and that is what generated this idea of having it in downtown.
“We (Kylie and Kate) both did a weekday market and found that was hard on people who work Monday through Friday. It was hard for them to get their local produce and food. The weekend is usually when people are out running their errands. People love that we are in walking distance too,” she said. “What we have done is very well received by the community. It has been a rough spring for farmers though, so we ask that people be patient. We will have the produce for them a little later.”
Morrison mentioned how they are now working with CSA Western New Yorkers who offer fresh produce, beef, chicken, and pork every week for 16 weeks. It works for the farmers since they pay for a whole season upfront.
Smith said the spring cold has hindered a lot of the work for farmers like herself, and sadly the early crops have not been able to grow.
“The cold rainy weather has made it hard for us to get the crops in early. It will be later than usual, but we will get it all in. We still have eggs, lettuce, herbs, greens, squash, and zucchini,” she said. “Anyone interested in joining us down here can contact myself or Kate. We are always looking for more vendors to join the downtown market.”
Susan DeMuth of Dogwood Trading Company has helped to promote the new farmers’ market all along.
“I just designed a banner for them, and I have helped them get approved by the village board for this location. I have helped them line up the music for the market too,” she said. “I am thrilled to have this market in downtown Dansville. I have been telling people in my store to come over here to the market. I am glad we are going to have this here until October.”
In the future there will be fresh cut flower bouquets and pumpkins as well. Many more things in store for the Downtown Dansville Farmers’ Market.