History, Heritage and a Fond Farewell

History, Heritage and a Fond Farewell

Dear Market Friends,

Saturday July 6th will be my last day as your market manager. I thought it fitting to say goodbye, and hand over the reins to the next generation on the market’s birthday.

I have devoted the last eighteen years of my life to the revitalization of the City of Easton, and to the market I love so dearly. It has been such an immense honor to do this work in the City I call home. I was fortunate to spend my first years as Assistant Main Street Manager, working alongside the amazing Kim Kmetz. Downtown Easton was a very different place in 2006 and we had to work hard to effect, even the smallest changes, and to convince folks to love Easton, even half as much as much as we did. I knew from my first interaction with the Easton Farmers’ Market that it had the potential to be a game changer for Easton; that it had the power to transform our community; to be an economic driver, and more importantly a place of pure goodness and joy. I threw my entire being into rebuilding the market. I said YES to everything. I knew in my heart that the feeling and vibe we created at the Easton Farrmers’ Market would spread, and soon that feeling would be synonymous with Easton as a whole.

Over the years, with the support of many passionate, positive volunteers and smart, loyal assistants, we tripled the size the Easton Farmers’ Market, developed a Winter Market, started a market-wide SNAP program. And after three years of operating the Weyerbacher Wednesday evening Market, I helped develop the Highmark Farmstand and launch the Easton Public Market. The city was thriving. And then the Covid-19 pandemic struck. Markets became more essential than ever and I knew the EFM had to remain open. I made the decision to move the Market from Centre Square to the riverfront. And while not popular with everyone, the move allowed the farmers to expand, and the EFM blossomed into something even bigger and more vibrant than before. With attentions turning to revitalization and food access in the City’s West Ward neighborhood, we opened the West Ward Market in 2002. Though the West Ward Market is still in its infancy, I can see the morale of the neighborhood improving, and see glimmers of that same sense of ‘pride of place’ that EFM was able to instill in the downtown many years ago.

So many emotions. Sadness because I’m saying goodbye, joy for what we, as a community have created, excitement for the growth that’s yet to come, and most of all, love and gratitude for the remarkable experiences I’ve shared with the many, many amazing people who supported me along the way. Thank you for helping me make my dream a reality. I always believed that the market could become the soul of our beautiful city, and it truly has.

With gratitude,

Megan McBride

P.S. I am confident that our new manager (soon to be officially announced), will love and nourish the markets. And that with the support of our incredible volunteers, and all of you, the Easton Farmers’ Market and its sister markets will continue to grow and thrive for centuries to come. Huzzah!

As for me, I look forward to shopping the markets as a ‘regular person, along with my pup, Liam. And to my new position at the Nurture Nature Center where I’ll be serving as Director of Buy Fresh Buy Local – Greater Lehigh Valley, and providing event support for the many exciting changes happening at the Center!

Thank you to my friend and mentor Lynn Prior who first led the charge to save the market back in 2002, and then went on to start the local chapter of Buy Fresh Buy Local. I’m proud to follow in your footsteps.