Camas-Washougal residents looking for fresh, local produce and a family-friendly outdoor space to visit with neighbors while still safely social-distancing in this COVID-19 era are in luck: The Camas Farmer’s Market is back for another season and has put precautions in place to help keep vendors and visitors safe from the coronavirus.
Located on Northeast Fourth Avenue between Camas City Hall and the Camas Public Library, the farmers market runs from 3 to 7 p.m. each Wednesday, through the end of September.
Returning customers will see a similar assortment of vendors selling everything from certified organic produce from Camas’ Shady Grove Farm to plant starts and herbal teas from The Lady in the Window, another Camas-based vendor.
“It’s been a better turnout than I expected,” said Christina Safford, of The Lady in the Window. “I wasn’t going to do it because (with the COVID-19 restrictions) you can’t taste the teas … but everybody has been really cool and people are still buying. I think people are grateful that (the market) is here.”
Steve Inzalaco, of Shady Grove Farms, agrees that business has been better than many vendors anticipated. In fact, the Shady Grove booth — the only certified organic farm in Camas, Inzalaco says — is nearly selling out by the end of each Wednesday market.
“It’s been really good,” Inzalaco, who runs the booth with his wife, Lindsay Inzalaco, says.
The 2020 farmer’s market may look very similar to past markets, but there are definite changes due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. For starters: everyone must wear a mask, enter through the market’s western entrance off Northeast Everett Street, adhere to the one-way lanes and stay at least six feet away from people not in their immediate households.
Farmer’s Market organizers say they are working with state, county and local agencies to meet requirements related to COVID-19 precautions throughout the farmer’s market’s 2020 season.
Market organizers have listed several rules on the market website that are designed to keep customers and vendors safe, including:
- Anyone feeling sick or who has been exposed to someone who is sick must stay home;
- Hand-sanitizing stations are located at the market’s entrance and customers are required to sanitize their hands when entering and exiting the market;\
- Face coverings are required;
- Only one family representative is recommended;
- Dogs, except for service animals, are discouraged;
- Customers are asked to use payment cards when possible;
- Farmers and vendors will bag produce for customers; and
- Customers are asked to maintain six feet of distance between others.
The market is still accepting EBT cards and vendors are accepting debit and credit cards. For more information about the Camas Farmer’s Market, visit camasf armersmarket.org.