"I've got tomatoes, I’ve got red navel oranges which very few people around here have, I’ve got sweet potatoes, tangerines and grapefruit."
Ron Johnson started selling his produce at the St. Andrews market place last summer.
"It sounded like an interesting place and when I got here and saw the people around here, they're so friendly, it was just where I felt I was led to be,” said Johnson.
Ignacio and Kelly Handal were inspired by small-town markets in Europe.
"This is actually not a new idea; this is a very old idea. A community market place for the community to come together, sell their produce, food," said Handal.
Since it opened in March, the market has grown to be the home of six micro-restaurants and 23 local vendors.
"It’s been wonderful. They key to our success is that we're all working together to draw traffic. So each vendor is not relying on themselves to bring 100 people every day."
"Things are really picking up; we're seeing new faces in here every day."
They still have room for more new faces.
There are 3 restaurant spots still available and five retail spots.
"It’s so expensive to start a restaurant these days. There are so many really expensive pieces of equipment that you need and we kind of circumvent all that because we have a community kitchen."
Handal says they can start a small restaurant at the market for $500 monthly.
You can take Johnson’s word...
"It’s fairly inexpensive, there's a lot of business it's a great place to be, the people are friendly, and the people are nice."
"Come visit us at St. Andrews, try us for lunch or come get some fresh local honey or locally made soaps or hand crafted jewelry - it's all local."
Shopping local is good for the Wiregrass' economy.
For more information about the St. Andrews Market, call 334-618-0738 or 334-718-6724.
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