Thiensville - The Thiensville Business Association is eyeing Village Park as a potential new site for the Thiensville farmers market.
The farmers market, currently held from 8 a.m. through 4 p.m. each Tuesday in the Walgreens parking lot at Friestadt Road and Main Street, holds nearly 50 farmers. The plan presented by TBA and Thiensville Business Renaissance Committee member Jesse Daily would move the market to Village Park off Elm Street - either in the parking lot or on the grass - and expand the hours from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
"It gives everyone (a chance to get to the market)," Daily said, "from the lunch hours to the evening hours."
The plan also includes the possibility of a beer garden and live music event each Tuesday which, combined with the softball games going on at the park on Tuesdays, would be a draw to both the area and the market.
Daily said the TBA plans to launch a marketing campaign for the farmers market through a combination of print media, craigslist and Facebook ads, and 10-12 new temporary or permanent signs throughout the village which would serve to divert a portion of the estimated 7,000 to 20,000 cars which traverse Thiensville daily to Village Park.
"If you're driving through Thiensville, I want you to know the farmers market's going on," Daily told the committee.
Generally, members of the COW were supportive of the move.
"The river is a gem," Village President Van Mobley said. "Whatever we can do to get people close to the river is a benefit."
Yet there were some lingering doubts over whether the farmers should set up shop in the parking lot at Village Park, which would lessen parking for patrons, or on the grass of the park itself, which could damage the turf and create time and expense for village staff.
"Potentially, I think you're creating a lot of extra work for Andy (LaFond, public works director) and his crew," Trustee Ken Kucharski said.
The COW decided to hold off on a decision until more feedback comes in from village residents, and the farmers themselves, the absence of whose input was noted by committee members.
Mobley encouraged people to contact village officials through the village website or through the contact information listed there.
Nevertheless, without significant reason to do otherwise, COW members seemed to agree that 2013 could be used as a trial year for the new site, and will take up the matter again for recommendation at a later COW meeting and approval at the Village Board.
"The worst case scenario is we go (back) to Walgreens, and it was an experiment," Trustee David Lange said. "But it could be fantastic."
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