Needham Farmers Market/ Credit: courtesy Farmers Market

This Sunday morning, June 16, the Needham town green will get a little greener as the Farmers Market pops up for the first time this season. After a couple of years of being sidelined to Greene’s Field during construction on Town Common, the market organizers and sellers are looking forward to the increased drive-by visibility of setting up in front of Town Hall.

Last year, about 450 people visited the market each week between June and October, said Allie Despres, the director of marketing. She thinks the number could be 20% higher this year, returning to the numbers seen the last time the market set up on the common.

“I think this year we’ll probably have one of the better seasons,” said Peter MacArthur, an enthusiastic vendor whose MacArthur Farm stand is one of two produce sellers at the market. “People want their produce. They want their strawberries and blueberries and raspberries, and they’re waiting for the corn.”

MacArthur has been a mainstay of the Needham market. He doesn’t see himself competing with the town’s permanent farm stand, Volante’s, because he is married to Helen Volante. He worked for his father-in-law in the 1970s before establishing his own farm business in 1981. “My father-in-law gave me a lot of words of wisdom,” MacArthur said. “Bring people the best produce and they’ll find you wherever you sell. Bring them junk one time, and they’ll never come back.”

Other vendors coming back this year include Silverwood Organic Farm, Captain Marden’s Seafood, Mei Mei Dumplings, Bombay Brunches (pre-made, frozen Indian food) and Flores de Cafe coffee. One new coffee vendor is a 25-year-old Needham entrepreneur with one foot in Colombia. Maria Helena Paez runs Berraquera Coffee, which sells coffee beans grown and roasted in Columbia.

The market will be open on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and live performers will help make each week festive. The Sunday time slot helps set the Needham market apart. “Dedham has a farmer’s market on Wednesdays,” said Despres. “Roslindale has a really nice farmer’s market, but that’s on Saturdays. We’re one of the only Sunday markets around.”

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