By Beth David, Editor
The final Huttleston Marketplace of the season was a great success, with 65 booths, the most ever, on Saturday, 9/19/20, according to Fairhaven Office of Tourism Director Christopher Richard. The marketplace spread out way beyond its usual space to accommodate the extra booths and keep them apart to stay within COVID-19 guidelines.
Signs reminded people to wear masks, keep six feet away from each other, wash their hands and wash produce before eating it.
In its third year, the outdoor bazaar features vendors selling select hand made arts and crafts, quality antiques and vintage collectibles, upcycled items, fresh farm produce, and locally prepared foods.
This year, however, there was no live entertainment, no bounce house or other extra activities that would compromise the COVID-19 guidelines.
Most vendors said that the season was a good one, with a surprising amount of foot traffic. Several said that it was one of the few that managed to stay open during the pandemic. Farmer’s markets were exempt from the closings as long as they followed the guidelines.
Lisa Elliott, who sells hand woven wearables, said that customers were very good about wearing masks and social distancing.
“It was very successful,” said Ms. Elliott, adding that there were many new people who discovered Fairhaven’s marketplace because their markets were closed.
Market regulars Sharyn and Doug Meehan, however, said they thought traffic was down for them. They sell framed jigsaw puzzles.
“It’s been an awesome day so far,” said Mr. Richard. “And a great, great season.”
He said many vendors joined for the first time this year because their regular events were canceled. Many of them said they will return next year, and a few already signed up. Vendors like the space, and although they will not be seven feet apart when not in a pandemic, Mr. Richard said that the HMP generally leaves more room between tents than other markets.
He said the vendors are all friendly with each other, and the whole atmosphere is very friendly and fun. This year’s vendors were so satisfied with the experience that they gave him a thank-you card signed by all of them.
One of the things that sets the HMP apart is that vendors do not have to commit to all the weeks of the season.
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