MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. — Local shoppers who wish to eat and shop for locally-grown food will have a year-round home for both, as the Farmers Market in the Boys and Girls Club of Northern Westchester celebrated its official opening for business over the weekend.
Mayor J. Michael Cindrich was on hand for the ribbon cutting, despite the market being unofficially open since December. But the ceremony that occurred on Saturday brought in people from near and far, those who said they value local food.
“I come out every week,” said Chris Pfluger, Mount Kisco resident and local shopper. “That’s all we eat. We stopped buying from supermarkets, and we’ve only been buying from farmers markets for two-and-a-half to three years now. It’s better quality, and we know where it’s coming from.”
The farmers market opening in the gym at the center is not just a seasonal stop for local buyers. The grand opening this weekend marked the beginning of a year-round market that will inhabit the club on Saturdays and will be moved outdoors when the weather is consistently warm.
The vendors who inhabit the market pay a $40 fee to be at the market and nearly all of the money goes back into the Boys and Girls Club besides some for marketing purposes.
“It’s not a private entity that walks away with the money out of the village, because the Boys and Girls Club does great things for children, young adults,” Mayor Cindrich said. “Whatever’s earned here by the club eventually ends up back in the Village of Mount Kisco. We’re very proud of it and the people in the village want it.”
In its first month, the market raised more than $1,000, which has Brian Skanes, the longtime executive director of the center, quite pleased. But money is not the main goal of the market, he said.
“It’s more of a community service and it’s part of the curriculum we’re trying to teach our kids,” Skanes said. “Eating locally, homegrown, wholesome foods is what everybody should be doing, and we’re trying to show them you can do it through these markets.”