The Pendleton Farmers Market is open Fridays, May thru October, between 4pm and 7pm on the 300 block of Main Street in downtown Pendleton, Oregon
The Market was started in 2002 by a dedicated group of Pendleton volunteers who wanted to improve our region’s sustainability, food security, and self-reliance by expanding our access to fresh, local food. The Pendleton Farmers Market is a nonprofit corporation recognized by the State of Oregon with a mission of enhancing the regional economy, and community "livability" by providing accessible "direct marketing" opportunities to customers and vendors. The Market is a membership organization with an elected Board of Directors. The Market is made up entirely of volunteers except for the Market Manager position which is a paid position.
The Farmers Market operates from 4:00 p.m.– 7:00 p.m., or dusk (whichever comes first), Friday evenings through the summer. Dates change annually but will likely be from mid-May through mid-October, depending on weather, crop availability and logistics.
Although the Farmers Market starts at 4:00 p.m., volunteers begin closing off the 300 block of Main street between 3:00 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. in order for farmers to set up and to give customers time to leave the 300 block safely. It takes a minimum of 1 hour for many farmers to set their booths up (although some set up much more quickly and others take longer.) Most markets allow one and one half to two hours for setup, and many farmers seemed surprised that we "only" allow 1 hour. Maximization of market hours is optimal in order to provide value to the farmers, who travel between ½ hour and 2 ½ hours to reach Pendleton.
Most of the farmers already go to larger, more established Saturday morning markets (Walla Walla, Portland or Pasco) and need to get back home in the evening in time to pick produce and reload their trucks for those markets. They are generally unable to stay later than 7:00 p.m. at our Market.
The Market would not be allowing enough "sales time" if we only operated for less than 3 hours. Round-trip travel takes 1-5 hours for these farmers, and that this does not include setup. Typically, farmers markets operate for four hours (8:00 am to noon is common on a Saturday morning market, for example). Moving the starting time later in the evening would mean losing farmers and shrinking the Market.