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Lovingston Farmers Market now accepting SNAP

The Lovingston Farmers Market returns for its second year on April 17 and will be open from 3 to 5 p.m. every Wednesday.

Last year, Leslie Brock and Selena Hitzeman formed the farmers market in a building Hitzeman owns on main street in Lovingston.

“We saw a need to bring local produce to this area of Nelson County,” Brock said.

Brock said the Nellysford Farmers Market was successful and they felt that there needed to be in Lovingston.

“We also wanted to make healthy food more accessible to people in this county,” Brock said.

The market will be accepting SNAP benefits this year. SNAP provides low-income families with a card to purchase food for their household.

“This was our goal with the farmers market to make healthy food accessible to all,” Brock said.

Hitzeman said they had to apply in order to be able to take SNAP benefits and they came up with a process for it.

Applicants can apply on-line at www.dss.virginia.gov or at the local department of social services in Lovingston. For more information about SNAP eligible items visit https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/eligible-food-items.

“We have a special reader that takes EBT and they [customers] decide the amount they want to use and we give them coins they can use with the vendors,” Hitzeman said.

Last season, the market only held food items but this year, crafters and artists will be included in the lineup.

There are a total of 17 vendors right now, three are food trucks. The market accepts vendors on a rolling basis.

According to Brock, the vendor fee is $15 per day and the market does not charge a percentage of sales.

This season, there will be a diverse mix of vendors for the market. They will have nursery plants, watercolor art, different breads and jellies, different produce, pottery, and pizza and taco trucks.

The Lovingston Farmers Market is nonprofit so they are accepting sponsors.

The market is open every Wednesday until Oct. 30. For more information on the market, go to its website at www.lovingstonfarmersmarket.com.

Source: www.dailyprogress.com

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