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April 28, 2020

The Plains farmers market opening as drive-thru

Contributed Photo
The Archwood Green Barns Farmers Market operates from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays, starting May 3.
Archwood Green Barns Farmers Market near The Plains will open its 2020 season Sunday, May 3, with a drive-thru model, because of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The market at 4557 Old Tavern Road operates from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. each Sunday.

“Shoppers are strongly encouraged to pre-order and pay ahead digitally by contacting the vendors listed on our website and to follow safety protocols recommended by Virginia Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control,” Market Manager Elizabeth Melson said in a press release Tuesday. “Also on the website, shoppers will find the market layout map. Visitors must remain in their vehicles and follow the traffic pattern on the map to ensure a safe market experience.”

Many familiar vendors will participate in the drive-thru market, with more joining as the season progresses, Ms. Melson said.

“It’s really important right now to limit congregation and touch points,” she added. “This will be an adjustment for everyone. Farmers markets are typically a tactile sensory experience and an opportunity for socializing. We will work to get back to closer to normal operations as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Mrs. Melson serves the Central Region Representative for Virginia Farmers Market Association. The association has communicated regularly with the governor and state agencies “to advocate for farmers and markets during pandemic response,” she said.

The association provides information about safely operating farmers markets during COVID-19 and offers training for vendors and market managers, along with resources for financial assistance for farmers and small businesses. 

Other markets in Fauquier County have modified their operations. The Warrenton Farmers Market successfully launched its season as a drive-thru operation Saturday, April 18. The farmers market at Remington Community Garden operates with a pre-order, pickup-only model.

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