Rain, cold won’t postpone start of farmer’s market season

Saturday marks the return of the outdoor Freight House Farmer’s Market in Davenport, despite unseasonable weather.

At Allens Grove Greenhouse in Donahue, Iowa, that means Doug Coobs spent his Friday night loading up the truck with flowers and hanging baskets.

“It’s kind of our Friday night activity, to get ready for market. Every Friday, for the next six months,” said Coobs.

Rain or shine, Coobs will in Davenport Saturday morning selling his plants. Open year-round inside the Freight House, the popular market expands outdoors each May.

“There’s always some customers that come through, so they deserve to have some vendors there as well. It isn’t always real pleasant; it’ll be wet and cold tomorrow,” Coobs said.

Freight House Farmer’s Market coordinator Dianna Blake said the weather won’t stop local farmers, craft vendors, and customers from coming out.

“We were open when it was snowing; we’re always open,” said Blake.

The gloomy weather, though, has taken a toll on some of the products.

“The cold, wet is definitely delaying things. There’s people that would have product ready. Even people that are growing in hoop houses, where the rain isn’t in effect, they’ve had the cold weather slow things down, and the lack of sunshine,” said Coobs.

“It will take a wee bit longer for outdoor produce to be brought in. I had a few cancellations saying, ‘Oh geeze, it’s only this high,'” added Blake.

But while the wet, empty parking lots might look more like February than May, starting Saturday, the show must go on.

“Bring an umbrella, wear your galoshes. We’ll see you then,” said Blake.

Some grand opening festivities have been moved back to next weekend. On May 11, the Freight House will kick off the season with a marching band, petting zoo, and an outdoor musician.

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