Carol Jones saw a neat opportunity to utilize “bob” and give something back to the Wagoner community. The Saturday Wagoner Farmers Market was born.
“Bob” is the acronym frequently used by Wagoner’s Economic Development Department, which stands for burned out buildings. It’s the stretch of now empty space where Wagoner’s historic buildings burned to the ground on South Main Street, Sunday, June 30, 2017.
Jones is the director and manager of the Wagoner Farmers Market. Coming from a beekeeping and farming background, her curiosity spiked when she heard there was interest forming at an economic development meeting to start a Saturday farmers market.
She immediately called the economic development team and said she’d love to help get it started. Months later, it was a go – and she became the woman in charge.
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“We wanted something back there to give the community something to do and to let them feel like they have a place to come and visit and congregate with people and have a good time in historic downtown Wagoner,” Jones said.
Jones hit the ground running – and the first Saturday farmers market happened, June 17, 2021.
The market sits on the site of the former Owl Drugs building, now on 418 West Cherokee Street. It was one of four historic buildings destroyed by the fire in 2017.
Seventeen vendors of honey, wines, produce and crafts are partnered with the farmers market. In addition, a fundraising stand was set up to raise money for Bryce Kindell, July 17 – a Wagoner fisherman severely injured in a crash, July 11. They also had a pie–baking contest where Wagoner residents submitted pies for judging.
“I just wanted to do something good for the community,” Jones said. “We had several people ask for a Saturday market and that’s what we did.”
Jones is a beekeeper and has a farm, Fragrant Forest Farms. She makes honey and natural products straight from her bee hives. She also has a garden and grows vegetables. She started selling at farmers markets about four years ago and said she paid a lot of attention and learned what it took to run a farmers market.
Her two daughters, Savannah and Serenity, her sister, Samantha, and two nieces, Taylor and Sydney, take care of the other duties so she can focus on the Wagoner Farmers Market.
“I had no intent of ever starting my own farmers market,” Jones said with a laugh.
The Wagoner Farmers Market is on Saturdays from 8 a.m. – noon, weather permitting. There is also live music from 7 – 9 p.m.