Gardeners' market comes to Noble neighborhood
On three consecutive Saturdays, beginning Aug. 25, Cleveland Heights gardeners are invited to participate in the Noble Gardeners’ Market, to sell fresh vegetables, fruits and flowers that they’ve grown in Cleveland Heights community gardens and in their own backyards. (No processed foods may be sold at this market.)
The mini-park at Roanoke and Noble roads will be the site of the market, which will run Aug. 25, Sept. 1 and Sept. 8, from 10 a.m. to noon.
The mini-park, a reclaimed parcel one block north of Monticello Boulevard, was formerly occupied by a gas station. Thanks to Superfund monies, the city of Cleveland Heights cleaned and landscaped the site. Gardeners representing Noble Neighbors, a local grassroots organization, have planted a public perennial garden on the corner and tend perimeter gardens on the site.
Noble Neighbors leader Brenda May calls the planned market a “seed-planting” effort, tipping a hat to the phrase’s multiple meanings.
“We’re starting small,” said May, “just a few weeks, just a few gardener/growers, and just a few items to sell. Our hope is that both sellers and buyers will be able to imagine our market’s possibilities and prepare for next summer’s sales as they plant community garden and backyard plots in the spring of 2019.
“Community building is our highest priority, which makes this event unique among the numerous farmers’ markets in our region. This is about neighbors meeting up with neighbors and sharing the abundance of their gardens and the gifts of new friendships.”
“A gardener’s market in our new mini-park is a logical next step for the city’s collaboration with Noble Neighbors,” said Carol Roe, mayor of Cleveland Heights. “One of the distinguishing features of Cleveland Heights is its history of creative grassroots involvement. The city government functions best when it recognizes and supports those efforts.”
Essential information for sellers:
- This is not a flea market/yard sale event. Only fresh vegetables, fruit and flowers may be sold.
- Sellers must bring their own table or ground cloth, and must be able to make change for customers.
- Sellers will be asked to sign in and declare where their produce was grown.
- Only gardeners who grow in Cleveland Heights are invited to sell. No truck farmers from outside the city. (Support them elsewhere!)
- Sellers will not be charged for space.
- Sellers must clean up and take away all items and disposables by noon.
- The market has a “no processed food” rule—the organizers don’t have permission this year for gardeners to sell their famous salsa, or any processed food items, even if they grew all the ingredients themselves. That next step would require health department input. Remember—the market is starting small, planting “seeds” of an idea. Organizers will work on that selling-processed-food idea for the future.
- There are no utilities at the site, so no electricity or water.
- Street parking is available at meters on Noble Road, or for free on side streets.
Noble Neighbors is grateful for the support the city of Cleveland Heights has provided. For more details about the Noble Gardeners’ Market, go to www.nobleneighbors.com.
Tom Gibson, a resident of Cleveland Heights since 1980, is a former president of Heights Community Congress, a board member of Reaching Heights, and a founding board member of Heights Arts. He is the principal of Green Paradigm Partners, a community organizing and landscape design firm. Gibson established a permaculture garden project in the Oxford Community Garden, and is currently helping 10 neighbors on Langton Road establish Pocket Pollinator Gardens in the Noble neighborhood.