hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

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July 3, 2014

Farmers market survives through community support

From summer through the early fall, you can’t miss them.

For that part of the year, they take over the lot next to the police station on Bailey Boulevard.

There you’ll find vegetables and fruits, all grown locally, fresh as can be. But there’s more, much more.

At the Haverhill farmers market, you can find soap, meats, crafts, jewelry, even treats for the pets — all made locally. (See story, Page 1.)

There’s even entertainment, also “grown’’ locally, with bands from Haverhill and vicinity serenading visitors as they stroll through the marketplace.

But there’s another reason to shop at the city’s farmers market, besides the quality items you can buy and the welcoming atmosphere.

The market consists of farmers and other local merchants who depend on the people of Greater Haverhill to allow them to keep working, to survive economically.

Most of these farmers and merchants and their families have been committed to the community for generations — especially people like Wally Lesiczka.

He and his relatives have kept their family farm alive for some tough years and never gave up on the farmers market, even when it all but died out. With reinforcements joining in during the last few years, they have brought the market all the way back and are making it more successful than ever.

But for the market to continue to be successful, it needs plenty of people on the other side of the counter, customers who appreciate merchants’ efforts and what they offer.

It comes down to neighbor helping neighbor.

So this summer, stop in at the farmers market. You’ll likely be happy with what you find — fresh food, sometimes offbeat but useful items, all surrounded by a pleasant atmosphere.

One thing’s for certain: Those who run the place will be happy to see you.

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