2013 saw growth and change at Cheverly Community Market. In January, the Board met on retreat to discuss long-term plans. In February, Market Managers Kathryn Andrews and Liz O'Leary were presenters at the 2013 Maryland Department of Agriculture Conference, where they spoke about communications and enlisting community support. Did you notice the newly repainted Market signs this year? Those were repainted (with the help of Alex Carter) in April. And that's all before the first market of the season!
Cheverly Community Market opened earlier than usual in 2013 -- the first Saturday in May. And though, thanks to a long, cold winter, our wonderful produce vendors were a bit delayed in their offerings, we were thrilled to welcome many new vendors and community groups this year. We were also thrilled to be part of Cheverly Day in 2013, being very much a "Homegrown in Cheverly" part of the community. Throughout the 2013 season, from our first Market in May all the way through our big annual Thanksgiving and Holiday Markets, Cheverly Community Market has been proud to be part of this unique town, and we're pleased to welcome you to our family.
In August, we said goodbye to Operations Manager Liz O'Leary, who moved to South Carolina with her family. We are so grateful to Liz for her work in 2012 and 2013 -- this was a time of real change, and Liz's charm, spirit, and good humor were great contributions. Happily, we gained a wonderful interim replacement, Diane Beedle. Diane has been a longtime supporter of the Market, and her excellent organizational and administrative abilities were a great addition to our group. Her contributions through the end of the season have been invaluable. And though Diane will not be continuing in this role in 2014, she is working on a special project for the Market, which we'll be very glad to share with you in the near future. To Diane and Liz, thank you.
Our fantastic board was busy this year -- we are working diligently toward 501(c)3 status, many thanks to Liz Tuckermanty. Cathy Wintermyer did yeoman's work as our wine ambassador, additional manager when needed, and the heart of the Market. We were thrilled to welcome Leela, daughter to Board President Monica Mohindra and husband Tom Smith. And while Monica took a much deserved leave of absence from the Board to care for her gorgeous newborn, Father Kevin Kennedy most ably stepped up and ran our meetings...and told the worst jokes you've ever heard :) Board members MJ Coolen and Rachel Mears were great -- Rachel could frequently be found helping the managers set up at 6:30am, and MJ was wonderful in helping the Market and the Town work together. As always, we are so very fortunate to have Kelly Fisher, our treasurer and music coordinator, on board. In addition to all the behind the scenes work Kelly performs for Cheverly Community Market, she and Charles Andrews are our house band, and have been since the beginning. Again, no words could adequately express our gratitude. In fact, that goes for the entire Board. This is a labor of love, and Cheverly is very, very lucky to have such a wonderful team of dedicated Board members guiding this organization. When you see these people, make sure to thank them.
We also extend a very special debt of thanks to Mayor Mike Callahan and his spectacular volunteer crew. In every weather, we count on their efforts. In fact, the Market simply could not function without this amazing group of men and women. And we'd be remiss if we forgot to thank our wonderful Department of Public Works, Town Administrator and the Town Council for all the support they provide throughout the year.
What does 2014 hold for Cheverly Community Market? We don't know all the details yet, but it's sure to be exciting and we can't wait to share it with you. The 2014 season will open in late May -- dates and vendor/community group applications will be available very soon.
Finally, a personal note. After six years (less a one-year break) working on communications at Cheverly Community Market, 2013 is my final season on this side of the Market table. Being part of the extraordinary team that has built Cheverly Community Market -- from the first start-up meeting and just four vendors to today’s nationally recognized mid-size market -- has been one of the great joys of my working life – a real labor of love. Thanks to all who have made this experience so wonderful. It’s been a privilege. I am eager to return in coming seasons as an occasional vendor (you’ll find all sorts of unique handmade goods under my pricklygirl art+craft moniker). I look forward to watching Cheverly Community Market continue to grow, and I can’t wait to hang out at those café tables and enjoy coffee on a lovely morning next summer.
Again, many thanks for five great years. I have wonderful memories of my time at the helm, and can’t wait to begin the next chapter!
Cheverly Community Market