The East Gate Town Center in conjunction with Red Paint Marketing (A local marketing and Public Relations firm) will be opening a unique indoor market to showcase area farmers, artists, crafters and antique dealers, fashioned after the French Market in New Orleans, beginning Saturday, July 7.
The purpose of the Town Center Market is to create a vibrant, year-round indoor market in Chattanooga where residents and visitors can shop for locally grown and produced foods; purchase merchandise from area artists and crafters; obtain information from and support area community organizations; enjoy local entertainment; and gather with neighbors to form strong bonds and build community spirit.
Chattanooga area caterer Sharon Caylor who is launching a new line of signature chocolates said, “I love the idea of a climate controlled indoor market. I participate in the Chattanooga Market downtown on Sundays, but I excited to have additional opportunity on Saturday to sell my new line of chocolates which are very heat sensitive.”
The Town Center Market’s farmers and produce section will be called “The New Victory Garden” and will be involved in launching a new campaign in Chattanooga encourage area residents to grow small gardens and contribute a portion of their harvest to the Chattanooga Food Bank which provides food for over 20,000 meals to those in need in the Chattanooga area. Each Saturday the market will offer free workshops in gardening, home preserving, and nutrition provided by local chefs, the Chattanooga Food Bank, Master Gardeners and more. The Hamilton County Master Gardeners organization will be using the New Victory Garden Theme for their exhibits at this fall’s Hamilton County Fair.
Executive Director of Red Paint Marketing Alicia Anderson will serve as the market manager. “I am very excited to bring this venue to this side of town and I am getting great positive feedback from area residents,:she said. "The Town Center Market will be more than a farmers market. It will be a place for the community to spend time and learn ways to make their lives better and fuller.”
The Town Center Market will be partnering with Woman’s Way Journal, Mountain Shadows Living Magazine, the Chattanooga Education, Arts and Culture Council, the Hamilton County Master Gardeners, The Chattanooga Food Bank and the Chattanooga City Library to make the new market option possible for Chattanooga.
“Farmers markets grow healthy farms, healthy people, and healthy communities” said Stacy Miller, executive director of the Farmers Market Coalition. “During a slow economic recovery, farmers markets are stand-out successes in delivering triple bottom line benefits while making entrepreneurship work in communities large and small.”