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Peters farmers market hopes to produce a place 'to meet and interact'

Brian F. Henry | Tribune-Review - Kevin Kern of Kern Farms in Eighty Four collects eggs on Sunday, March 23, 2014.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>Brian F. Henry | Tribune-Review</em></div>Kevin Kern of Kern Farms in Eighty Four collects eggs on Sunday, March 23, 2014.
- L to R: Amy Michalesko, Mey Walker, Rev. Kris McInnes, Seashal Belldina, Chelsea Johnston, Gianna Thomas
L to R: Amy Michalesko, Mey Walker, Rev. Kris McInnes, Seashal Belldina, Chelsea Johnston, Gianna Thomas

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By Karen Kadilak
Wednesday, March 26, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

A farmers market to be held this year at St. David's Episcopal Church in Peters will serve two purposes.

In addition to providing locally grown produce, it will be a community gathering place, said the Rev. Kris McInnes, priest in charge at the church on East McMurray Road.

The market starts May 28 and continues from 3 to 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Sept. 24.

“We're rebuilding and trying to reach back into the community,” said McInnes, 34, who became head of the church in January. “People commute in and out of their houses. We thought this would give people a place to meet and interact.”

Kern Farms and Simmons Farm have agreed to take part, McInnes said. One or two more growers probably will be on hand, he said, and an orchard has expressed interest.

Applications have been received from vendors offering prepared foods, baked goods, fudge and jams and jellies.

“We're trying to avoid duplicating items,” said McInnes, noting coffee and cheese sellers are needed. Acoustic musicians are being considered for entertainment.

“We see this as a place where people can gather, do their shopping, have a bite to eat and make a family outing out of it,” organizer Chelsea Johnston said. “We're hoping it will be a place where people will linger (and) connect with neighbors and farmers.”

Kevin Kern said he looks forward to selling fruits, vegetables and eggs raised on his farm in Eighty Four.

“My dad had a small farm in Peters before he moved,” said Kern, 28. “We have strong ties to the (Peters) community.”

Kern said his produce will change with the seasons. He'll sell lettuce, broccoli and cabbage first.

“Then we'll go into corn, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and cucumbers and melons, before transitioning into squashes and pumpkins,” he said.

Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.

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