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Katrina Anniversary marked as "Early Thanksgiving" community picnic at the Farmers Market

Loyola press release - August 23, 2006

To celebrate surviving, reinventing, and rediscovering the power of community, the Crescent City Farmers Market will give thanks at an enormous table with enough seats for all during the Tuesday, August 29 Market at Uptown Square, 200 Broadway, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.

Students from the nearby Audubon Charter School will ring the lunch bell at noon. The market will feature its usual array of fresh and local products, including watermelons, sweet corn, and rare treats like muscadine grapes. Guest chef John Rester of Serranos Salsa Company will have Gulf Fish Tacos and Lake Pontchartrain Crab Cakes for sale– or bring your picnic lunch from home.

Because serenity is an essential – and sometimes elusive – state here and now, the Market will also feature the Office of Homeland Serenity Tent, with musicians performing and massage therapists providing their healing touch for free. And to help you prepare for the next storm, or just a long weekend away, the Market will offer Don’t Leave Home Without Them: Essential New Orleans Recipes for Evacuation.

The day’s activities will serve as a reminder of where the best things in the community reside- its people, says Richard McCarthy, market co-founder and executive director of the sponsoring entity at Loyola University--marketumbrella.org. “Since we reopened in November 2005, the Market has sprung to life with large crowds, most vendors returning, and a strong sense of community.” Mccarthy said.

The Markets, held on Tuesday and Saturday, are also good for the economy. According to a study released in April 2006, average gross receipts are $25,600 each day. That adds up to a combined annual economic impact of nearly $6.8 million across the region. The study was conducted with the group’s on-line economic impact measurement tool SEED: the Sticky Economy Evaluation Device. Designed with help from Loyola pollster Ed Renwick, SEED has become the industry standard for farmers markets nationwide. “Our numbers are not bad,” says McCarthy,”if you consider the largest capital expense for many of our vendors is an umbrella or tent.”

The Crescent City Farmers Market opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 1 p.m., rain or shine. The event is free and open to the public. Founded in 1995, the Crescent City Farmers Market provides a safe, fun, public opportunity for food producers and consumers to reclaim some control over the food distribution system in the Greater New Orleans region through direct marketing and the animation of public space. Year-round, rain or shine.

For more information about this event or the Saturday time and location, log onto marketumbrella.org or call 504-861-5898.

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