Silly Sundays return to Park City’s Main Street
In 2007, the Park Silly Sunday Market opened and gave Utah residents a place where neighbors and friends come together to celebrate fun and funkiness, according to its mission statement.
Executive Director Kate Boyd said co-founder and CEO Kimberly Kuehn’s vision hasn’t changed over the past nine years.
"One of Kimberly’s original missions was to present a community forum, and part of that capacity was making sure this was a venue where anyone could promote their causes and ideas," Boyd told The Park Record during a joint interview with Director of Operations Michelle McDonald. "We continue to give them the opportunity to tell people about their missions and what they do."
The Park Silly Sunday Market, Park City’s annual, ecofriendly, family-friendly, open-air market and street festival will open its 2015 season on June 7, from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
The market will feature unique and eclectic arts and crafts, live music, performing arts, gourmet foods and locally grown fruits and vegetables.
The vendors change each week, so the public will have fresh experiences during every visit.
This year, the Park Silly staff has received nearly 600 vendor applications, according to McDonald.
"The 23 spaces at the Farmers Market are all sold out for the season," McDonald said. "There are still a few open spaces in the lower Main Street area. We have some random spaces in June."
Applications will be accepted throughout the season as space allows. Applications can be found online at http://www.parksillysundaymarket.com .
"Anyone who wants to apply can do so and I will go through the options with them," McDonald said.
Part of the influx of new vendor-applications are the result of Cooking Light magazine naming Park Silly Sunday Market as one of the Top 50 farmers markets in the country, according to Boyd.
"We also have many new vendors, some of whom have never been to Park City," she said. "We also have three new farmer vendors this year — Mt. Daisy from Sandy, Mai’s Farm from Hooper and Windmill Farms from Perry and Garland. That may not sound like a lot, but it is in the farming community, because it is always difficult for them to come up on a Sunday. It’s exciting to add them to the list of farmers who have become our regulars."
In addition to the volume of applications received, the quality of vendors has increased, Boyd said.
"I also feel like the caliber of the vendors have improved greatly over the past few years," she said. "For example, this year was the most difficult year we had judging jewelers. We’re only allowed so many jewelers on the street on a given Sunday, and many of them who applied blew us away."
"In the past there were jewelers that applied and we had no problem saying no," she said. "This year, although there were some ‘easy nos,’ it was significantly more difficult to do that."
Consequently, the Park Silly Sunday Market has felt more like a farmers and artist market, and that includes the rise in quality of the culinary offerings, McDonald said.
"We will never lose that funky, street festival feel, but it is interesting to me that the local foods and slow-foods movement has picked up pace in Utah and we have seen more gourmet food products here in Park City and in Salt Lake City," she said. "That is probably one of our fastest growing areas."
That doesn’t mean the rest of the market is lacking interesting and experimental offerings.
"We get a lot of phone calls from locals here who want to show something new to see if something they are passionate about will catch on," Boyd said. "The whole purpose of the Park Silly Sunday Market is to give these people a venue to show what they are doing."
Some of these people are children.
"As we have done so in the past, we also give youth vendors a place to show what they are doing," McDonald said.
One youth vendor this year is called Pupcycle, created by Parkite Ezra Rosenfield.
"He’s 9 years old and makes dog toys out of recycled materials," McDonald said. "He will come join us for two or three weeks to see if his things are something people would want."
Another youth vendor is Sweet Mia’s Market, by Park City resident Amelia Walden, who is 11 years old.
"She creates handmade market bags and various other farmers market themed items," McDonald said. "This is cool because they both are in that same mindset that supports our sustainable, green mission. Sometimes the youth have more of the mindset than the adults."
Also, Park Silly will showcase a featured adult artist.
This week’s artist is painter Hilary Adams, McDonald said.
"The corner booth located near the left side of the Main Stage is reserved for our featured artists who demonstrate or practice their crafts," she said. "In the following weeks, we will present a handmade paper maker, a clothing designer who will actually create and cut patterns and sew. And we have someone who will do some screen printing. This is an interesting way to get these new experiences in front of young Silly Market goers."
McDonald also mentioned the booths and kiosks that are reserved for local nonprofit organizations.
Sunday’s nonprofits will be Park City Sailing, Summit Land Conservancy, Holy Cross Ministries, Park City Professional Artists Association, the Historic Park City Alliance and AFS-USA, formerly the American Field Service, an organization that provides students opportunities for intercultural learning and offers international exchange programs in more than 40 countries around the world.
Along with the farmers market, artisan crafts, nonprofits, foods, drinks and libations, Park Silly will present live music programmed by Mountain Town Music.
Sunday’s Main Stage entertainment will feature Trezz Hombres at 11 a.m., 11 Hauz at 1:15 p.m. and Amanda Johnson at 2 p.m. The Farmers Market Stage will feature The Twin Flames at 10 a.m. and Pete Witcher at 1 p.m.
"This is so much different than our first year when we had 40 booths of eclectic items that, in some cases, weren’t any different than someone’s garage sale," McDonald said.
The Park Silly Sunday Market will open on Historic Main Street on Sunday, June 7, at 10 a.m. The Park Silly Sunday Market is open every Sunday through Sept. 20. There will be no Park Silly Sunday Market on Aug. 2 or Aug. 9. Admission is free. For more information, visit http://www.parksillysundaymarket.com .
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