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Steamboat Magazine

The Vendor That’s Been There From the Start

06/07/2024 07:22AM ● By Elainna Hemming

Steamboat Springs, CO - Every Saturday in summer, Yampa Street transforms into a series of white booths adorned with linens, jewelry, fruits and vegetables, baked goods and so much more. A parade of people wanders through, clutching extra large lemonades, dripping iced coffees and bags full of fresh, organic greens. On Saturday, June 8, the Steamboat Springs Farmers Market will return, marking its 20th anniversary. 

One booth, bursting with beaded bracelets, dainty silver rings and funky earrings, has been a part of the market since its inception in 2004. Marie Winter, owner of local jewelry company Northern Lights, has seen the Farmers Market develop into the well-organized, bustling event it is today. For her, the most rewarding part is bonding with other vendors and seeing her customers go wild for her jewelry extravaganza. “My booth is jewelry insanity,” she says. “But it’s fun and everyone likes it that way…we give customers bowls and they fill them up and it’s a giant jewelry party.”

The Farmers Market wasn’t always such a big event; Marie recalls several location changes as more and more booths were included. During the first season on the courthouse lawn, she only did one or two weekends but paid for the whole season anyway. “I was determined to support it financially,” Marie says. She remembers every stop: “They moved us to Sixth Street. We quickly got even bigger…produce was being driven up to us now too – and off to Seventh we went!” With a few stops at 12th and once on Lincoln, too, she adds. 

She considers the rising popularity and success of the market to be a result of Tracy Barnett and Lisa Popovich of Mainstreet Steamboat’s immense effort and organization skills, alongside the contagiously positive attitude of all of the vendors. “I am super proud of Tracy for taking the chance and having a vision, and Lisa runs a tight ship where love and kindness prevails. The vendors are simply the sweetest, kindest, most cooperative and supportive of each other of any show you will find,” she says. Marie considers this amiable community spirit to be the main reason customers say that Steamboat is truly one of the best markets in the country. “I literally hear that statement every weekend,” Marie says. 

To view Northern Lights’ products and other booths, visit the Farmers Market this weekend on Yampa Street between Fifth and Eighth, running from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The market will take place every Saturday thereafter, through Sept. 21, 2024.