By Megan Hopps
SUN PRESS Newspapers
The Champlin City Council Monday, March 10, continued discussion regarding questions about the farmers market.
At the previous meeting Feb. 24, councilor Bruce Miller asked questions about the markets hours of operation and the financial impact of providing this particular city service.
Staff prepared a report with answers to farmers market questions. The Champlin farmers market was created because the city’s Parks and Recreation Department was receiving numerous requests to host a market. The purpose is to provide residents an opportunity to produce and share fresh produce, flowers, breads and baked goods.
Currently, the Champlin farmers market operates Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. from July 9 through Oct. 8. Councilor Miller asked at the previous meeting, “If this is something we offer for the benefit of the residents, why do we offer it in the mornings when most people are at work?”
The reason for this, according to the report provided by staff, is that other markets in the area operate in the afternoons and evenings. These hours are a niche for the Champlin market, as surrounding markets are offered at other times. Furthermore, since the Champlin farmers market was created after other surrounding city markets, staff came to the conclusion that it would be best for residents and vendors to offer it during the morning hours. This way both vendors and residents could participate in multiple markets if desired.
The financial breakdown of the losses and gains was also provided to council in the packet. A breakdown of how much the city spends annually to run the Champlin farmers market was provided as well as the revenue the city makes during market operation. It indicates the farmers market is break even.
In other news, Bill Craig from the League of Minnesota cities presented.
Craig is a former township administrator, city department head, city manager and county administrator. He has been assigned to two and a half counties and occasionally visits city council meetings to highlight league programs which are beneficial to the city. The league recruits retired city administrative staff and elected officials, and assigns them by county to assist communities throughout the state. These volunteers are termed ambassadors.
“The league has annual and regional meetings so cities can get together and share information and problems they’ve experienced,” Craig said.
There are more than 800 cities in Minnesota, most of them quite small and the program is primarily helpful to smaller communities by accumulating useful information for cities regarding laws, elections, surrounding communities and useful information of the like. The league also provides assistance serving as a guiding point to leaders of cities seeking experts in a certain field.
The next council work session will be Monday, March 24, at 5:45 p.m. in the council conference room and the next city council meeting will be held immediately after at 7 p.m. in the council chambers.
There will be an open house for all residents to attend for the proposed Highway 169 and 101st Ave. interchange study. This open house will be Tuesday, March 25, from 4-7 p.m. at Brooklyn Park city hall.
Contact Megan Hopps at [email protected]