Coventry Regional Farmers’ Market will soon learn if it has won a barn

By Melanie Savage - Staff Writer
Coventry - posted Tue., Aug. 23, 2011
An illustration from 'The Great Barn Giveaway' of the prize barn. Contributed photo. - Contributed Photo

Judging by the amount of traffic on The Great Barn Giveaway website,  the Coventry Regional Farmers’ Market may have won the contest sponsored by W.H. Silverstein, Inc., American Farmland Trust and the Farmers Market Coalition.

After the contest was narrowed down from more than 60 entries to just three finalists, the Coventry market was eligible for voting from Aug. 1 through mid-August. Though the results won’t be officially announced until Aug. 29, Coventry received more than twice as many comments from supporters as the closest competitor, Chatham Borough Farmers’ Market in New Jersey. The other finalist was the Hemlock Michigan Farmers’ Market.

According to Coventry’s contest application, the market has a variety of uses planned for the new 24-by-36-foot barn (valued at $80,000), should it win the grand prize. The market plans to use the shelter for chef demonstrations, do-it-yourself lessons, book-signings, gardening lectures, children’s activities and story-telling.

The barn would feature a permanently-mounted audio system to be used for musical performances and market announcements. The market swappers group, organizing cash-free swaps of seedlings, garden produce, eggs, preserves, cookbooks and handcrafted foods, would utilize the space. Market volunteers envision displaying the work of local artists on the barn’s walls, utilizing the space for homesteading skills workshops, and outfitting a portion of the barn to provide secure storage space.

Go to the website on Aug. 29 for the official announcement of the voting results.

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