Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120
jvargo@cityofperris.org

Perris' Farmers Market Kicks Off Third Year in Style

Produce for sale at the Perris Famers Market included oranges, limes, grapefruit and avocados
Produce for sale at the Perris Famers Market included oranges, limes, grapefruit and avocados.

Perris’ Farmers Market kicked off its third year with the addition of 25 new vendors who say they are excited about taking part in a venue that is becoming known throughout the region.

Vendors from Hemet, Temecula and Murrieta are among the 2012 participants in the Farmers Market, which opened for business Thursday.  The new merchants include a hummus vendor and sellers of medical uniforms, lifelike wooden roses, skateboard accessories, candy, peanuts and peel-on tattoos.

“We have grown a lot since the beginning,” said Veronica Arana, the City’s point person on the Farmers Market. “Word has gotten around about how popular the event has become. We have a waiting list of vendors. It’s gratifying to see how the market has grown.”

The crowd grew steadily as the opening day went along, until by
about 7 p.m. throngs of customers crowded into the Farmers Market
on D Street.

Candace Walters sells a gourmet cupcake. She sells out every time she visits the Perris Farmers Market
Candace Walters sells a gourmet cupcake. She sells out every time she visits the Perris Farmers Market.

Candace Walters, who operates Allures cupcakes, said she makes the trip to Perris from Murrieta because the City’s Farmers Market always means a sellout.

“I love to bake, I love to put smiles on peoples’ faces and I love to make money,” Walters said. “The City of Perris offers a very friendly venue for its Farmers Market. It’s a family town.”

Walters continued her sell-out streak. She left the Farmers Market after selling out all her cupcakes and assorted other pastries.

Area farmers also delivered the goods, bringing in a bounty of fruits and vegetables, including strawberries, cabbage, celery, carrots, green onions, cilantro, grapefruit, avocados, oranges, limes and tangerines. There were also clothing and food vendors, popcorn stands, pony rides for the kids, hula hoops, stuffed animals and
sports-related gear.

Dale Wilcox explains the process by which bees make honey during the Perris Farmers Market
Dale Wilcox explains the process by which bees make honey during the Perris Farmers Market.

Dale Wilcox of the Natural Honey Co. in Perris, used the Farmers Market as a teaching tool. He handed out samples of honeycombs made from beehives while urging those who gathered around his stand not to torment or kill honey bees. He said the use of pesticides and mismanagement by beekeepers is one of the main reasons that bee populations have declined in recent years. Honey bees, he said, need “more rest and recreation” to produce honey.

“The situation is perilous but we can help to save them,” Wilcox said.
Wilcox said he is pleased to be part of the Farmers Market.

“I’m excited,” he said. “People are really interested.”

Sisters Denise Hornkohl and Diane Doyle praised the City for making the Farmers Market attractive to families, by adding pony rides and a disc jockey to provide music for the crowds. The pair sells Italian
nice, pizza-by-the-slice and churros.

Ceramic figurines added to the ambiance of the Perris Farmers Market
Ceramic figurines added to the ambiance of the Perris Farmers Market.

“It’s been a real enjoyable experience,” Hornkohl said. “No other farmers market offered pony rides. The City has gone out of its way to make this event very family oriented.”

Like other vendors, Hornkohl and Doyle praised City staff, particularly Arana, for making it easy to complete the necessary forms and become part of the Farmers Market.

John and Debbi Hobbs are new to the Perris Farmers Market in 2012. They are selling wooden roses with their son,

Joshua, 16. The roses are made out of molded birch wood which is hand-dipped in organic dye. Their booth featured more than 20 colors.

Joshua will use proceeds from the sales to help pay for a trip to Europe,
where he will study culture and history in Germany, France and England.
The family said they are looking forward to being part of the Farmers Market this year.

Joshua Hobbs, 16, is selling wooden roses to help earn money for a trip to Europe
Joshua Hobbs, 16, is selling wooden roses to help earn money for a trip to Europe.

“It’s a good location, on a major street,” John Hobbs said.

Joshua Hobbs said helping run a business has taught him many things—how to tabulate money, how to become better organized, how to deal with stress, how to talk to the public.

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch stopped by the Farmers Market and was impressed by what he saw.

“There was a huge crowd,” he said. “There is always a very good turnout. It’s good to see new things to buy.”