Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions about Tappahannock Farmers' Market

Question: What size are the vendor spaces?
Basic size is 10'x10' - a 10' x 20' space can be provided at double the space rental fee. Produce vendors on Cross Street (between Queen and Prince Streets) have a larger booth space to accommodate vehicles, usually 16' x 16' 

Question: How many spaces can I have?
Two adjoining spaces is typically the maximum space that can be reserved, but please call the Market Manager or email  to discuss any unusual requirements. 

Question: Can I display political literature or promotional material?
Absolutely NOT! The market is not an appropriate venue for political literature and promotion. We ask all vendors to refrain from displaying or offering political endorsement in their booth or area. Vendors who do not comply will be asked to leave and will not be invited to return to future markets. 

Question: What are the set up times?
Vendors must be set up and ready for sales by 8:45 am - TFM officials and volunteers will be on site at 7:00 am to assist. Vendors are encouraged to arrive promptly at 7:00 AM. There is usually a wait to unload, and the sooner you arrive and get set up, the smoother things will go. Please move your vehicle as soon as possible to the designated vendor parking lot. Market volunteers will show you the location of the vendor parking area, and there will be ample signage to direct you. 

Question: What happens if I am late?
All vendors must arrive by 8:30 am and must be finished unloading by 8:45 am. Late arrivals will not be allowed to park in the unloading zones after 8:30 am, as our customers will need those spaces. Late arrivals will be required to park in the vendor lot across from Queen Street and move their equipment/goods from their car to the market location. We are enforcing these rules because we have vendors located on the Fountain Green arrive at around 9:00 am to unload on Cross Street which is totally unrealistic. By 8:45 am, we already have a large number of customers walking around on Cross Street and upper Prince Street that we need to protect from moving vendor vehicles. 

Question: After unloading my booth and products what do I do?
Please do not park on Prince Street or the circle lot behind the former Beale Memorial Baptist Church after you unload. We want your market customers to be able to park close to the market and buy lots of stuff! There is designated vendor parking in the lot across from the market on Queen Street (next to the antique shop) and on Cross Street between Prince and Duke Street. We are strictly enforcing these rules because many vendors located on the Fountain Green stayed in the unloading spots for the entire market last month. Vendors coming in after them had nowhere to park to unload. Anyone not complying with the parking rules will not be invited back to the market. 

Question: Where is the vendor parking located?
The largest parking area is on the north side of Queen Street in a parking lot between the antique stores and Northern Neck Burger. The other area is on Cross Street south of the market, between Prince and Virginia Street - also all of Duke Street is available for vendor parking. As a vendor you are discouraged from parking anywhere on Prince Street in order to give priority to easy access for your customers - we want them to find a parking spot close to the market and be able to carry their purchases a short distance, and buy as much as they can to carry back to their vehicle. 

Question: What are the times and conditions for Farmers' Market at RivahFest?
There is NO Farmers' Market on RivahFest day in June. If you are a CRAFT vendor interested in a booth at RivahFest, please check the conditions that apply to RivahFest vendors on the website. All spaces for RivahFest are managed by the Arts & Crafts committee or Merchant's Market for non craft vendors. Please see 

Question: What are the take down times?
We ask that everyone close at 1:00 pm and leave the site by 2:00 pm. Again there is usually a small traffic jam at this time. Please use common courtesy to ensure a smooth breakdown process. Please make sure you take any garbage in your area with you for disposal as we have limited capacity for disposal. 

Question: What is the policy for inclement weather?
This is a rain or shine event. We do not give refunds for inclement weather. In the event of a weather-related emergency or for other mitigating circumstances, we will refund on a case by case basis. 

Question: Will there be assigned spaces or will vendors be allowed to pick their space?
Spaces will be assigned by the market manager. Once you receive a space assignment, you may request to have that same space at consecutive markets. Please contact the Market Manager with any special considerations or requirements, usually the sooner you apply the more likely you will get your favorite spot. 

Question: Do you allow small umbrellas or small tents to be used?
Absolutely. The typical set up is a 10'x10', four-legged tent. Please anchor your tent in case of wind gusts or storms. Possible solutions are sand bags, water buckets, or weights. Vendors are solely responsible for ensuring the stability of their tents and tables. 

Question: What is the deadline for reserving a space(s)?
We'd like to get applications as soon as possible so that we can map out the market, but there is no deadline this year. 

Question: Do you require a business license and taxes to be collected?
Please see our application and rules and regulations for answers to these questions. We can mail them to you if you'd prefer. Vendors are responsible for complying with State law. The Tappahannock Farmers' Market will not be responsible for verifying a vendor's compliance with State law regarding licensing or tax collection. If you are a Tappahannock business with a license, then you are already covered. Town Council has exempted all other vendors from requiring a business license. 

Question: Can you waive the fee for a non-profit entity?
It is a possible to have the fee waived at the discretion of the Market Manager. Fee waivers will be considered on a case by case basis and are limited to one 10 x 10 ft space - if you need two spaces, the second space is subject to the regular market fees. The management of the market does limit the total number of free non-profit spaces so early application is essential. 

Question: Can I resell manufactured goods or franchised products?
Typically, no, but the Market Manager may consider inclusion of manufactured goods on a case by case basis. For instance: T-shirts advertising your business might be considered, especially if you are selling hand-made or home-grown items, as well. Typically resold products offered must be 10% or less of your total products offered. Please remember that a Farmers' Market is about home grown and home made products. There is inevitably in some cases a portion of the product which is acquired as raw material to which you add value, such as wood for crafters and wool and materials for handicrafts. Your added-value should exceed 50% of the product value. 

Question: Can farmers sell out of the back of a truck? 
Yes! It is encouraged. We have approximately 15 parking spaces on Cross Street that back up to the Fountain Green for this. We are trying to recreate the atmosphere of a market that existed for many years at this location that had local farmers backing into the Judge's parking spots on the weekends and selling right out of the truck. 

Question: Can I drive my vehicle on the grass? 
Certainly not! All vehicles, trucks and trailers (unless specifically permitted by the market manager) must remain off the grass and walkways of Fountain Green. Exceptions can include a booth cart or boat trailer if moved manually from the street but check with the market manager first. 

Question: Are power outlets available?
There are limited number and low load power outlets available at specific spots - see red dots on the TFM booth layout. 

Question: Are generators permitted?
Generators are permitted but they have to be ultra quiet. We have musical entertainment, a craft and artist’s area, and a wine tasting area which benefit from a quieter social environment. Folks tend to shop, meet friends and stop to chat so our atmosphere is very important to our market concept. Nothing destroys the ambiance of a farmers' market like noise and fumes! If we deem the generator to be too noisy, we will request it be shut down immediately. 

Question: Will EBT sales be offered?
We are working hard to establish a system for EBT sales. Please check back here for updates. As of 2016, we have not been able to implement EBT / SNAP due to excessive rules and regulations, however we expect a new initiative in Virginia will make this possible using tokens issued by our welcome center. 

Question: Does my product qualify as produce?
Produce is defined as vegetables and fruit, butchered meats, fresh seafood, dairy, cheese, cut flowers, seasonal plants and freshly baked items. Preserves and cooked foods do not qualify for the "produce" definition. 

Question: Are there any vendor categories that are not permitted at TFM?
No political organizations, weapons sales, or live animal sales. 

Question: My booth setup is in conflict with a adjoining vendor's booth - what do I do?
Immediately contact the Market Manager or a Market Volunteer - in green t-shirts or green TFM hats - they will intercede and resolve any situations. In all situations, the booth space provides for a 10 x 10 ft area and the vendor should not extend beyond this space except with the specific approval of the Market Manager - this may be given to a vendor and is specific only for the market date of the approval. 

Question: Is there handicap parking available?
Virtually all of the market is easily accessible, there are no inclines or road curbs, or raised pavements in the area of the market. We suggest you get to the market early and park on Cross Street, or be dropped off from your vehicle as close to the intersection of Prince Street with Cross Street - there is parking on both sides of Cross Street and access to the market on Prince and Cross Street is within a few feet from the intersection. Cross Street and upper Prince Street are blocked for vehicle traffic so you can circulate safely on Cross Street and Prince Street among the produce and food vendors and on the adjacent Fountain Green where most of the craft vendors are located. 

Question: Does the Tappahannock Farmer's Market carry insurance for the events? 
Yes, the Tappahannock Farmer's Market is insured. Click on the link below to view the insurance document.
Tappahannock Farmer's Market Insurance Document - PDF

Question: I'm a food vendor - what do I need to do to be compliant with Virginia law?
Food prepared on site: Vendors have to send in application to the Essex County Health Dept - costs $30 - they are inspected on site. Food prepared at vendor's location - most likely they have already been inspected and have a Health permit. Need to send a copy of the permit and submit application to Health Dept prior to market - there is no fee. 

Click HERE to download the Virginia Dept of Health Application for Temporary Food Event Permit

Click HERE for a detailed review of Virginia Food Laws and how they apply to Farmers' Market vendors

Click HERE for a review of Virginia new home kitchen food processing exemptions


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