The Downtown Newport Farmers Market held the soft opening on Saturday, June 2nd. The new managers are Jim and Jammie Hardin of Newport. The couple is a great addition to the leadership of the market. Jim has a degree in Agricultural Business from Arkansas State University and farmed for 25 years. They are both avid gardeners. The couple, especially Jammie, has been involved since 2011, having her own booth with products such as fresh lemonade to lemon cupcakes. Although they are now over the market, the Hardin’s will still maintain a booth of fresh lemonade, fruit-infused water, muffins, homemade granola, coffee and tea.  

            The Grand Opening is set for this Saturday June 9th. According to Jammie, “Due to some April frost this year, the Grand Opening had to be pushed back to accommodate the loss of vegetables.” Not to worry, the market still has plenty of great products such as homemade soap. This past weekend, the 4-H set up milk goats for demonstration. The children absolutely loved it! The pictured milk goat is named Magic. She is one of three milk cows that Maggie brought for the milking demostration. Magic and other farm animals plan to return on Saturday, July 7th for Kids Day. She will be part of a “Petting Zoo” that also includes a Llama, miniature donkey, turkey and hen. Interestingly, Angela Gibbs of Classic Culture Soap Company had a booth on Saturday and was able to take the milk home to use in her handmade soap,” states Hardin. “The soap containing goat milk is great for sensitive skin and skin problems, but takes a month for that particular soap to cure. Can you believe she had been looking for the milk!” Other vendors in attendance included Sam Porter selling eggs and Wayne and Ann Daniels with vegetables and canned beets.

            Newport can expect to find lots of farm fresh produce over the next three months, along with fresh eggs, baked goods and handcrafted items. Vegetables include fresh lettuce, spinach, radishes, onions, beets and cucumbers. Later in the summer comes tomatoes, okra, peppers, and peas, and delicious fruits like watermelon and cantaloupe.

            Check out Downtown Newport Farmers Market on Facebook for notifications and updates.