Tired of suffering the weather at your favorite farmers market? Air traffic controller Dan Cunningham hopes to change all that.
The Glendale resident, who sees retirement in his immediate future, is putting the finishing touches on a charming two-story bungalow-style house in Caitlin Court (an historic shopping district in the city's downtown), which will become an indoor farmers market called Blue Myrtle House -- open year-round and six days a week -- come end of September.
Cunningham grew up in Iowa, so farm stands, fresh produce and local, artisan products resonate with him. And because of his enthusiasm for airplanes, he plans to theme the space, filling it with airplane and airline memorabilia from the '30s, '40s, and '50s. He envisions using the bottom floor for edibles -- jams, jellies, pastas, salsas, fresh baked goods, and the like -- and the second story for arts and crafts.
A small separate building, equipped with AC and heating, will function as a fancy farm stand, stocked with fresh produce from a variety of vendors. It can be locked tight, allowing vendors to leave their produce there overnight, should they choose.
The pricing structure will be affordable and flexible. Farmers who make use of the farm stand may lease space by the day, choosing to come on the days of the week that make sense for them. Indoors, vendors may lease a shelf, a large space or something in between, depending on their product. They will be charged a monthly fee.
Cunningham also plans to have a food and beverage component, given that he has enough space near the back of the house to accommodate a small commercial kitchen. As with everything else at Blue Myrtle House, he will simply be leasing out the space.
Down the line, he'll put tables and chairs on the balcony and in the courtyard (which will be landscaped and furnished with shade umbrellas) so that customers may relax and have a bite to eat.
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Cunningham began soliciting vendors this week. If you're interested in selling produce or artisanal products at Blue Myrtle House or if you're interested in leasing space for a food service component, call or text Cunningham at 623-252-4604 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info, visit the website at www.bluemyrtlehouse.com.