The Farmers Market at University of South Carolina Sumter will be open on Fridays from 1 p.m. until dark, according to Eric Reisenauer, executive associate dean for Academic and Student Affairs at the university.
Reisenauer said that Chris Sumpter, a Sumter County councilman and a farmer himself, approached the university seeking a venue for several farmers who wanted to establish a market to sell their vegetables and other products.
With the enthusiastic approval of USC Sumter Campus Dean Michael Sonntag and Associate Dean Bruce Blumberg, a location convenient to farmers and customers was found in a grassy area with several large oak trees between the USC Sumter Arts and Letters and Schwartz buildings, facing University Drive.
Reisenauer said the farmers operate as a cooperative and are independent from the university, with Marie Dorr of Dorr Farms as manager.
When the market opened for the first time last Friday, Reisenauer said products for sale included "fresh vegetables, natural meat products - sausage, bacon, hamburger - handmade bird feeders and bird houses, a food truck" and others.
About a dozen farmers are expected to participate each Friday until dark. There are no classes at USC Sumter after noon each Friday, so ample parking is available, and the farmers market is open to the public.