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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Quiet start for farmers market

Raynell Cook knits at the Peaceful Valley Artisans booth at the Humble Earth farmers market on Sunday. 
 (Liz Kishimoto / The Spokesman-Review)
Raynell Cook knits at the Peaceful Valley Artisans booth at the Humble Earth farmers market on Sunday. (Liz Kishimoto / The Spokesman-Review)

Hope was abundant even though shoppers and vendors were scarce Sunday at the first-ever Community Farmers Market in the Shadle Park neighborhood.

Organizers expect it to grow as people become aware of the gathering in the Humble Earth Natural Market parking lot at 4726 N. Oak St., just north of Wellesley Avenue.

“It’s going to be happening, and the North Side is going to be really happy to have us,” said Penny Bone of Cheney, who was selling bunches of lavender and insect-repellent swags made of tansy, costmary, mint, wormwood and sage.

Bone, wearing a lavender shirt, denim overalls and a straw hat with a lavender band, sat under a large umbrella with Linda Mason, who was selling perennial plants. The two women weren’t going to let the heat and low attendance diminish their hopes for the new market, which should have a wider variety of vendors next week.

Ryan and Kassandra Skinner bought Humble Earth in April and are just finishing the store’s remodel. They pulled together the farmers market in a couple of weeks. They plan to have it every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“The goal is to grow it,” Ryan Skinner said. “Farmers markets are how society has made it as far as it has. It’s the community intermixing with its neighbors. It’s something that’s been misplaced.”

Ruthanne Eberly read about the market in the Humble Earth newsletter and decided to go buy some organic sweet potatoes with her two daughters; Gina, 3, and Estelle, 9 months.

“It’s good,” Eberly said while browsing the display of organic vegetables.

The three women in the Peaceful Valley Artisans booth like the new market because it admits people with homemade art and crafts, unlike the downtown market.

“This booth has a little of everything,” said Annie Blackburn, who shared the space with Raynell Cook and Judy Orr.

That everything ranged from home-cooked dog biscuits and crocheted hats with fur fringe to fresh grape leaves and a stoneware condom holder.

Next week Skinner hopes to have local eggs, more fruit and vegetable sellers, and fresh blackberries and strawberries from Oregon.

Anna Ethington, who helped organize the market, guessed that about 200 people had stopped by, and said it was a good sign that one produce vendor had sold out by noon.

“It will grow,” Ethington said.

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