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North City Farmers’ Market Starts Music Series To Attract More African American Shoppers

The North City Farmers’ Market in St. Louis is in a neighborhood where the majority of its residents are African American.  It’s been a challenge, however, to attract more of them to the market every week.

Community organizers are attempting to change that. Their idea is to feature African American musicians with the hope that shoppers will follow.

Held on the 2700 block of North 14th Street every Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., the North City Farmers' Market will take place through October 12.     

St. Louis Public Radio’s Erin Williams visited the Farmers' Market on a recent sunny and hot late-Saturday morning.  Local artist Jamaica Ray was the featured musician and among the stalls for sale was fresh greens, sweet empanadas and, even, dog treats.

The summer music series endeavor is organized by the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group.  Claire Wolff is the group’s community engagement specialist.

“The group’s mission is to revitalize both the physical and social dimensions of the neighborhood,” Wolff said.  “Everything we do is really focused on the voice of the community and input from the community and driven by the community.”

Wolff said the Restoration Group submitted grant applications to arts and community nonprofit groups to raise money for the music series, the goal of which is to bring more African American artists to the market.

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