Finding a missing farmers' market

Dewey Square, South Station, Boston MA 02111On May 21, 2008, the City of Boston calendar (screen shot) announced the opening day of the farmers’ market at Dewey Square/South Station in Boston. The Boston Public Market Association website listed the same information.

We walked over to the square, but there wasn’t any market.

Here’s what we did about it:


[2008.05.21]  We called the City of Boston phone number on the calendar listing and were told that the city was waiting for information about the market schedule.

[2008.05.22]  We emailed and received a prompt reply from Howard Leibowitz, Executive Director of the Boston Public Market Association, explaining that the Association will not be offering a seasonal market at Dewey Square this year because they were unable to resolve logistical issues (loading/unloading on Atlantic Ave) that drove up costs. 

[2008.05.22]  We emailed the Mayor of Boston asking that the city step in and facilitate the opening of the market. (10 days, no reply)

[2008.06.02]  We sent an open letter to the Mayor’s Office. Continued… (Find out what happened, and comment)


4 responses to “Finding a missing farmers' market”

  1. Jacqueline Church Avatar

    Good work. Too bad the mayor’s office is still unresponsive. One of the most frustrating things, and part of why this city is still struggling to be a world-class city.

    Here’s the post I finally got up. We went to Copley Square today and there were two bakeries, a few flower farms/herbs, no veg yet. Would’ve thought we’d see some spring stuff, lettuces, ramps, morels and other shrooms…nada.

    Why does the detail here cause so much more of a problem than the Govt Center area? I would think that’s equally busy.

    Who knows.

    The Leather District Gourmet

  2. HowardL Avatar

    Jackie —

    With all due respect to the Mayor’s Office, they probably have a smallest role in that area as the Turnpike Authority owns the land and the Conservancy is scheduling to oversee the Dewey parcels come January 1. In terms of the police detail, it would be hard for them to waive the fee for BPM and not for dozens of other non-profit agencies that utilize police details.

    Re: Govt Center, the City allows the trucks to pull up on the Plaza, trucks are not allowed on the Dewey Plaza, according to the Pike.

    Re: Copley, still early, that’s a problem local farmers markets have. People expect a full range of produce in June, and often come away disappointed. Don’t worry, the good stuff is coming.

    Anyway, credit goes to the Conservancy folks for helping look for new approaches to make the market work. The City has also offered to be helpful, so stay tuned. Thanks to you and Sam for keeping the issue alive.


  3. HowardL Avatar

    “scheduled”, not “scheduling”, errata

  4. Bruce Ehrlich Avatar
    Bruce Ehrlich

    I placed a letter in the 7/20 Sunday Globe on this matter. I also wrote a letter to the Conservancy on their website (no response from them).

    What’s clear to me is that the leadership (Conservancy and MTA) are more focused on budgets, infrastructure, and control issues and less on actual human needs and pleasures, like the farmer’s market. Why spend millions of dollars on plazas and landscaping and fountains for tourists, without budgeting the small amount of money that would be required to operate a farmer’s market. Where are the priorities? Lack of vision, lack of leadership. Its just a shame.