City council is set to vote on the fate of the farmers market in La Mesa Village by deciding on whether it would move location or change its schedule.
“The farmers market is a great thing but it’s just on the wrong night and the wrong place,” said Craig Maxwell, owner of Maxwell’s bookstore. “It’s on Friday night which is already a busy night, so the market is interfering with business that will ordinarily come.”
Maxwell’s book store has been on La Mesa Boulevard for 16 years. He said he would prefer the farmers market to be moved to another day because its affects lunch business for others and his customers can’t find parking.
“Friday evening was my best evening and now it's my worst,” said Maxwell.
Just this month, councilmembers voted to approve the Village Enhancement Fund, a plan to use $40,000 in revenue from parking meters and parking permits in the Village to help fund marketing or new fun events that would help benefit businesses struggling because of the Friday night farmer’s market.
“What these new funds will allow is makeup and do events on other nights so new customers can come to make up for a business that some of those businesses feel like they’re losing on Friday nights," La Mesa City Councilmember Colin Parent said.
Theresa Favro, owner of the Amethyst Moon shop in La Mesa Village, says that with the farmers market people discover new businesses that they would otherwise not know about.
“It’s getting so much publicity for our neighborhood. We’re getting a lot of new customers who come back to the shop,” said Farvo. “People are finding out we have a great barbershop, a great tea room, a cigar shop, things people didn't know we're here on the street."
Councilman Parent says they'll leave it up to business owners and non-profits to submit applications for what types of events they'd like to see in the village.
“I would like for us to see some compromises, probably expand parking hour for customers, and extend the market down a street,” said Farvo.
On Tuesday, the city council will decide what to do with the farmers market. The options are moving it to a city parking lot, switching days, or adjusting the current schedule to a day that everyone can agree on.