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Greenmarket to return to Hunters Point in LIC this summer

A greenmarket will open in Hunters Point at the corner of 48th Avenue and Vernon Boulevard this July. Photo by Karen Frantz
TimesLedger Newspapers

Residents of Hunters Point in Long Island City will once again be able to buy fresh and local produce from a farmers market slated to open this summer.

The market, planned for 48th Avenue and Vernon Boulevard, is being restored by GrowNYC, a nonprofit that also operates several other greenmarkets in the city, such as the Union Square market, and runs other programs with the goal of creating a clean and healthy environment.

The market will be open Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. between July 13 and Nov. 23.

“Bringing a greenmarket back to Hunters Point/Long Island City has been a top priority for me and I am proud to announce it’s coming back,” said City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside), who has been advocating for the return of the market since around the time it closed.

The Hunters Point greenmarket closed in 2010 due to a lack of patrons and poor sales, despite an outcry from some residents. But the demographics in the area have shifted in recent years and the population has risen, making the neighborhood a more attractive location again for a market.

The market will also be run by area youths under the supervision of GrowNYC as part of its Youthmarket program. GrowNYC and the Long Island City YMCA will team up to recruit and train them to operate the market.

Van Bramer praised the program.

“Not only will we be bringing in locally grown, farm fresh fruits and vegetables directly into Long Island City, but we will be providing our local youth with jobs,” he said.

Sandra Jobe, who just moved to Long Island City from Seattle with her husband and daughter, was excited to hear about the farmers market coming to Hunters Point.

“That’s awesome!” she said when told about the plan. “I would be thrilled to see a farmers market.”

She said she grew up in California, where markets were plentiful.

“You could get a lot of good produce,” she said. “There would be roadside food stands all over the place.”

She said it was important to her to have a market near where she lived, particularly ones that are less touristy and do not also sell merchandise.

“I’m looking for food,” she emphasized, saying she wants produce that is fresh, local and sustainably grown.

Reach reporter Karen Frantz by e-mail at kfrantz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4538.

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