By Ari Rosner
Hollywood Farmers Market community volunteer coordinator
“Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.” – Unknown
Interested in volunteering at the Hollywood Farmers Market this season? Come to our annual volunteer orientation on Saturday, March 25 from 10:00 to 11:30 am, at the Rose City Park Presbyterian Church at 1907 N.E. 45th Ave.
The market wouldn’t be possible without the help of its volunteers. Every Saturday it takes 20 to 25 volunteers to keep the market running smoothly. A few early-risers show up at 7:00 a.m. to set up the market’s equipment (canopies, umbrellas, tables, chairs, signage) before customers begin arriving. During the market, volunteers answer customer’s questions, pass out fliers about upcoming market events, allow vendors working solo to take breaks, do crowd counts and anything else that comes up during the course of a busy market. Then, at the end of the market, they take all our equipment down and repack our storage space. Volunteers enable our market to function – and they make it fun.
Farmers markets are inherently social places. According to a Project for Public Spaces study, a customer has an average of 15-20 social interactions at a farmers market, versus 1-2 at a grocery store. For volunteers, that number is much higher. Even for the setup and breakdown volunteers – who mainly just interact with each other – the camaraderie and sense of shared purpose is strong.
On Saturday mornings, the mood at the information booth – which is the home base for market volunteers – is warm and inviting. New volunteers are welcomed heartily and quickly absorbed into the community and returning volunteers are greeted as old friends. Some of the volunteers are people I’ve known for years and every Saturday the market is something we share with each other and with the neighborhood.
If you’re interested in learning more about volunteering but can’t make it to the orientation – no worries – contact me at 503-803-7279 or gro.t1503195640ekram1503195640sremr1503195640afdoo1503195640wyllo1503195640h@sre1503195640etnul1503195640ov1503195640 and we can schedule you and orient you on market day.
See you at the market!
The Hollywood Farmers Market is located on Northeast Hancock Street between 44th and 45th avenues, one block south of Sandy Boulevard. It is open every Saturday from April through Thanksgiving and the first and third Saturdays of the month from December through March. Market hours are 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. from April through September and 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. from October through April. Dogs are welcome in the Market after 10:00 a.m. For more information, visit hollywoodfarmersmarket.org.