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South Boston Farmers Market grand opening slated June 14

The South Boston Farmers Market has been a growth industry since its opening in 2004, and Ray Satterfield is looking forward to more of the same in 2014 following a grand opening celebration June 14.

Satterfield, president of the Halifax County Farmer’s Market Association, said festivities start at 9 a.m., including music, door prizes and a “big crowd of folks.”

Customers can start buying produce at 6:30 a.m., Satterfield added.

Farmers Market hours are 7 a.m. until, six days a week, with the market closed on Sundays.

Satterfield hopes to have at least 32 vendors this year, and four new vendors already have come on board.

Much like a vendor reciting his wares, Satterfield listed the variety of items he anticipates will be on sale this year.

“Cabbage, onions, turnip salad, tomatoes, broccoli, string beans, butter beans, cantaloupes, water melons, baked goods, pies, jams and jellies,” recited Satterfield.

“We’ll have cooking demonstrations this year, but this is the place to come for good quality produce.”

“Fresh every day,” Satterfield noted.

Satterfield pointed out the popularity of the market has expanded to areas outside of Halifax County.

“It’s grown from four to 32 vendors,” he said. 

“We have people come from Raleigh and Danville, so that says something right there, and we’re probably the cheapest market around.”

Tracey Chaney of Misty Meadows, LLC has been coming to the market since last July, selling beef by the pound.

She and her husband, Edwin, used to travel to the Salem Farmers Market, and they’ve made the adjustment to a smaller, but closer venue to sell their wares.

“That was a very large market, and this is a smaller population to serve, so it’s been an adjustment getting back into it,” said Chaney.

The Chaneys raise beef without the use of hormones, antibiotics or steroids, and one reason they got back into retailing was customer demand for smaller cuts of beef.

The Chaneys have regular customers at their “hometown” market.

“It’s comfortable here, everybody helps everybody else,” explained Chaney.

“If you’re not busy, you chip in and help the person beside you.

“If you don’t have something someone is looking for, the farmer two stalls down may have it, so you direct the customer to that stall or hold a bag for him,” added Chaney.

“We’re happy here.  Our beef is raised here in the county, and we see a lot of local people, friends and family from a long time ago. We’re making new friends every day.”

Ed Smith from South Hill, who started working the South Boston Farmers Market two years ago on Saturdays, decided this year to come Fridays to have two market days a week.

“We work about 17 markets during the week and cover as many as we can,” said Smith.

“Our product is fresh country sausage, fresh ground sausage in bulk, hot and mild, we also have link sausages for the grill, sweet, brats, Italian, Polish,” said Smith. 

“They’ll keep coming back. They’re loyal customers if they like your product.”