Harvey Is New Farmers’ Market Manager

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Sabine Harvey, Chestertown Farmers’ Market manager

Sabine Harvey is the new Chestertown Farmers’ Market manager.

At the Chestertown Council meeting, Feb. 4, Councilwoman Linda Kuiper announced that Harvey will take over as manager effective immediately. Harvey’s appointment was unanimously approved by the council. Councilman Marty Stetson praised Harvey’s “abundant energy,” saying that she would be a wonderful addition to the Saturday morning market.

Harvey, a Maryland Master Gardener, is an Extension Program Assistant at the Kent County extension office of the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. She coordinates the school gardens at Kent County Middle School, has run plant clinics at the farmers’ market, and coordinates the extension office’s winter seed exchange. She has also been chairman of the Chestertown Tea Party for the last several years.

The position of farmers’ market manager became vacant last June with the death of Owen McCoy, who had run the market on behalf of the town since its revival in the 1980s. The position was filled on an interim basis by McCoy’s daughters until Harvey’s appointment.

Harvey said that among her first projects would be to update the farmers’ market website. She said she would ask Francoise Sullivan of Moo Productions, who manages the websites for the town and the Tea Party Festival, to take it over and bring it up to date. The website was previously run by one of the artisans’ market vendors. She said it takes a good deal of technical expertise to get an attractive website. She said the upgrade would be good for the market and its vendors. “Francoise does good work,” she said.

Kuiper said that she and Harvey would meet with Jamie Williams, Kent County Director of Economic Development, about other ways to advertise and develop the market. She said the website could be paid for from the membership fees paid by vendors in the market.

Town Manager Bill Ingersoll suggested that Harvey ask the vendors to contribute photos of their farms and other information to help make the website useful. He said he would contact Sullivan to help set up the upgrade.

Harvey agreed that it would be good to get everybody involved in keeping the website up to date and appealing. She also mentioned that many of the vendors have undergone training and obtained equipment to let them accept SNAP and WIC debit cards at the market. However, customers aren’t aware of this possibility, so nobody uses them – potentially leading to lost sales. She said the market needs to publicize that capability.

Kuiper said there is a meeting for market vendors scheduled for March 5 in Town Hall. Representatives of the Chestertown Garden Club, which maintains Fountain Park, and representatives of the county health department will be there. She said she and Harvey will also be talking to Bill Drazga of Music Life about having live music in the park during farmers market hours, from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays.

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Letters to Editor

  1. Just a note about the person mentioned in the article as “The website was previously run by one of the artisans’ market vendors.” It is amazing that that person is Nancy McTear and she has taken the time to do it for over 10 years because no one would do it. She takes photos every Saturday she is there and people use her photos all the time without her permission. She has no technical background in computers and has a program that is so old it can’t be updated and is no longer sold. She still does the best she can do. It amazes me she never gets a thank you or any recognition. No one even reached out to her to tell her this information or to work with her in updating the site. She also does the Facebook page for the market, which she updates constantly! Updating the website will be nice, but lets not forget someone with no technical ability has been doing what she could for the last 10 years with no help from anyone.

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