Accord reached, Silly Market seeks an eclectic lineup for 2013
Park Silly Sunday Market organizers, having reached an accord with City Hall to hold the event on Main Street in 2013, are collecting applications from people and businesses interested in participating next year.
The Silly Market was locked in negotiations with Park City leaders through much of the fall and early winter prior to a deal being reached last week. Kimberly Kuehn, the executive director of the Silly Market and one of its founders, said in an interview afterward the event is seeking vendors, food purveyors, musicians and entertainers for the 2013 June-to-September run.
She said the window for people to apply officially opened once the agreement was reached with City Hall. Kuehn said the timeline for drafting people to participate in 2013 remains on schedule even after the negotiations with Park City officials lasted longer than had been anticipated.
Kuehn said approximately 40 applications had been filed before the two sides reached the agreement, but a wider push is now underway. The applications that had been filed beforehand included vendors who had participated in the Silly Market before and ones that would be newcomers.
"The vendors of the market are extremely loyal to the Park Silly Market," Kuehn said.
Silly Market organizers and the Park City Council last week agreed to a one-year deal keeping the event based in its traditional lower Main Street location and allowing some activities along the upper stretch of the street.
The two sides, though, were unable to reach a long-term accord, something that the Silly Market and City Hall have indicated they desire. A working group will be formed involving City Hall officials, Silly Market representatives and figures from the Historic Park City Alliance, which promotes the interests of businesses on or just off Main Street. It seems far less likely now than it did earlier in the year that the Silly Market would move to another location after the one-year agreement covering 2013 ends.
"The vendors were always happy about what the organization did to stay on Main Street," Kuehn said.
Kuehn said the Silly Market normally receives approximately 300 applications by the time the event starts in June. Another 100 applications usually are submitted during the months the event is held. The Silly Market offers upward of 130 slots each Sunday.
The Silly Market lineup changes on a weekly basis although some of the vendors, entertainers and food purveyors are there consistently.
The agreement with City Hall left open the possibility of expanding the farmers market onto the parking lots on Swede Alley or into the Brew Pub lot on upper Main Street. The decision has not been made.
If the farmers market expands in 2013, Kuehn said, the Silly Market organizers intend to mount a push for additional vendors. She said Silly Market-goers have shown they are fans.
"The community wants more farmers. The locals have wanted a bigger farmers market," she said.
The not-for-profit Silly Market, created in 2007, has become a popular stop for Parkites and visitors, drawing large crowds to lower Main Street each week for shopping, dining and the entertainment. The vendors sell an eclectic mix of goods, including clothes, artwork and jewelry. There remains displeasure from some of the brick-and-mortar merchants along Main Street, though. They claim the Silly Market has cut into their Sunday sales.
More information about the application process for the 2013 event is available on the Silly Market’s website, http://www.parksillysundaymarket.com. There are separate links on the front page of the site for vendors, performers, musicians, not-for-profit groups, kids activities and sustainable groups. The information includes the price of booth space and a description of vendor categories.
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Beerman said he is aware of landlords offering relief of some sort, but he also acknowledged the landlords earn a living off the rents they collect.