Bloomington farmers’ market to reopen with changes Saturday after 2-week closure

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Bloomington Community Farmers’ Market will reopen this Saturday after being closed for two weeks due to concerns about public safety.

The City says the market was temporarily closed due to rising tension at the event and information identifying risks of specific individuals with connections to past white nationalist violence.

Since announcing the closure on July 29, City officials say they have met with members of the community to hear their concerns and suggestions about dealing with hate groups and bigotry.

The market will be open at its regular time and place, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Showers Common, but it will include some new aspects:

  • Cameras to monitor the site will enhance safety.
  • Two public streets will be closed to traffic during market hours to create a larger comfort zone for the market crowd (Morton Street from 7th to just south of the Smallwood garage entrance, and 7th Street between Morton and the B-Line Trail; 8th Street will be closed west of the market to the entrance of the Cook Medical Center).
  • The presence of police and other professional public safety officers will be increased.
  • New “market ambassadors,” volunteers with experience and commitment to the market, will welcome folks back and be visible embodiments of the inclusive spirit (If you’d like to join these market boosters, please let us know).
  • New signage will clearly indicate areas designated for flyering and expression and publicize market rules.

The City says it’s also working on longer-term efforts to address underlying issues. Mayor John Hamilton lists them in his statement to the community. Click here to read his full statement.

“With the market reopening on Saturday, our community is reclaiming our public space and, I urge, coming together to live out our community values of inclusion and caring,” wrote Hamilton in part. “Challenges in our community will continue. We know that a safe, civil, and just community does not mean a tranquil one. Disagreements, differences, even conflict may arise. That can be disturbing, upsetting, and scary. But our mutual caring and respect in Bloomington, our commitment to justice and inclusion, can and must carry the day. It is essential. Bloomington has this.”

Click here for answers to some frequently asked questions about the temporary closure.

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