Our last blog article shone a spotlight on some of the sessions and happenings for the first day of conference.
Now let’s talk about some of the benefits you will get from day two of conference – Wednesday, November 16th. This is when we really get into the good stuff and talk about some of the nitty gritty details that you need to know in order to manage your market effectively.
Now that everyone is settled in and hopefully got a great night’s sleep at The Holiday Valley Resort and enjoyed a complimentary breakfast, it’s time to get going on day 2 of learning and networking to help you build your market. At 9:00 am, we will dive into our morning session co-presented by Jennifer Jennings of Schenecatady Greenmarket and Penelope Jewell of the Bolton Landing Farmers Markets. These two ladies are incredibly knowledgeable on the topic of Managing Vendor Diversity. This session will prepare you with all the skills needed to manage the proper mix of vendors taking into account profit margins needed to keep vendors coming back to market as well as benefits to customers of the right amount of diversity. You will learn how these two managers balance these competing priorities within their own markets and then walk away with the skills to do the same in your own market environment. Vendor mix and diversity is a critical component of managing your market effectively so we will all sit together for this morning session before breaking out into two separate sessions for our next topic of the day after the coffee and chat break.
Coffee Break & 2nd Morning Session
We will take a brief coffee break from 10:30 to 11:00 to chat with other managers about our market diversity plans as well do some networking with a new group of managers from all around the state while we enjoy some coffee and snacks. Then you will have a choice to attend one of the sessions below depending on which topic is most relevant to your market. Luckily, you won’t miss out on the other topic though because the presentation and materials will all be available on your 2016 FMFNY Conference USB Drive.
- Topic 1 – Finding Support for Your Market, A Panel Discussion. No market is an island! A successful market has a wide base of community support and involvement from many different supporting individuals and community partners. These people and partnerships help your market thrive, but if you don’t have this level of support: How do you get it? Where do you reach out and what channels do you use? What do you say? Each of our speakers for this session is knowledgeable about a different type of market support so put together, you will have a great base of ideas to choose from to help you leverage support for your market. Speakers for this session include this great mix of ladies: Margaret Bruegel of the Fredonia Farmers Market, Susan Avery with the Southern Tier West Regional Farmers Market Network, Laura Biasillo of Cornell Cooperative Extension Broome County, Jacqueline Boyer from the NYS Dept of Agriculture and Markets and Galena Ojiem from the Farmers Market Federation of NY.
- Topic 2 – SNAP Best Practices, co-presented by Margaret O’Neill of the Rochester Public Market, Amanda Root from Eat Smart NY, and Jesse Knoth of the SouthWedge Farmers Market, will help you discover best practices for running a SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) at your market. SNAP success is not just about applying for a terminal and training a volunteer or employee to run the terminal during market hours. Markets who are successful in bringing large amounts of SNAP customers to their market week after week know a lot of tricks in terms of marketing and promotion that can help your market’s SNAP program shine. Glean the lessons from the hard work they have already put in and begin to reap these rewards at your market as well!
At 12:30. we will breaking for lunch to enjoy more networking and a catered meal featuring more yummy local eats from the Southern Tier West Region.
While everyone is full and happy, we will enjoy an afternoon session before heading out on our choice of tours. This session focuses on some of the other resources available to help your market grow and succeed, many of which you may not have even knew existed! There is no need to reinvent the wheel when we’ve done a lot of the prep work for you. In Sharing Federation Resources, our Program Administrator, Galena Ojiem, will make you aware of all of the resources the Federation has developed over the past 17 years, so you can take full advantage. These resources encompass a wide variety of things – from market management trainings, to guidebooks, to promotional assistance, to help learning the rules and regulations required of markets, we’ve got a resource on every topic. We even have ready-made templates available for everything your market might need to create, from your market rules to your budget, from strategic planning to risk management, from site evaluations to evacuation plans. You’ll walk away from this session knowing where, how, and when to take advantage of free Federation resources as you’re going about your job as market manager.
After the afternoon session, we will head off on today’s tours.
- Option 1 – The first tour option will take us to The Ellicotville Brewing Company (known locally as “EBC”), a destination brewery offering exceptional beers and a full brew-pub dining experience. We will truly get behind the scenes to see how everything works at the brewery, and you can choose to stay and enjoy dinner after the tour.
- Option 2 – Or, you can choose to join us for a visit to Blue Hill Farm & White Cow Dairy. We’ll have a chance to meet their grass and clover-fed cows who produce a rich, creamy and delicous milk and then step into their commercial kitchen to talk to the owner, Patrick Lango. Patrick will talk about his passion for sustainable farming and give us a behind-the-scenes look as well as allow us to sample some of the unique and original recipe small-batch products such as custards, yogurts, and tonics. Those choosing this tour will want to make sure to bring appropriate footwear for an outside farm visit.
After the tours, we’ll enjoy dinner on our own at your choice of Ellicotville Eateries and then head back to the hospitality suite before retiring to our rooms to enjoy one more exciting day of conference.
I can’t believe the conference is less than 3 weeks away (Where has the time gone this fall?), so make sure to book YOUR spot ASAP! Hotel registrations are due by November 1st to get the conference discount, which is only one week away. Reserve your space today at: