Market attendance no cause for concern

Official observation, after complaints about face mask wearing and social distancing, saw little cause for concern at the Lewisburg Farmer’s Market.

LEWISBURG — Lewisburg Farmer’s Market traffic was plentiful this week after some citizens questioned the wisdom of such gatherings.

Stacey Kifolo, East Buffalo Township manager, said the office received a handful of calls and emails from people who said the Farmer’s Market should not be functioning in view of the health crisis.

“Some were looking at the volume of cars that were there,” Kifolo said. “Some concerns maybe with people not wearing masks and about social distancing guidelines.”

Kifolo said the messages prompted a call to Buffalo Valley Regional Police to inform Chief Paul Yost. Kifolo also wanted to find out the degree to which local police could enforce the guidelines.

Kifolo said Yost had already visited the market and taken some photos.

“He left me with the impression that it was something that had been monitored,” Kifolo said. “He saw no concerns.”

Kifolo said an uptick of traffic at the market was expected as people begin to return to routine things.

“From the get-go there had been concerns about this,” Kifolo said. “My understanding is that the vendors that were open, at least before this week, were the produce vendors. Really to me, there’s no difference in going to the Farmer’s Market than going to Giant or Weis.”

Kifolo was confident that the owner of the market has made it known what expectations are so that patrons can take care of themselves and their neighbors.

The topic was raised at a Lewisburg Borough Council work session and at a weekly online meeting of municipal and Union County officials.

Lewisburg Borough Councilmember Jordi Comas said he had seen numerous people without masks during a visit to the market. Others were concerned that a virus such as coronavirus travels without respect to lines on a map.

Preston Boop, Union County commissioner, said the market was mentioned at the meeting with municipalities and that it was looked into, but called it an attempt to stir up trouble.

Staff writer Matt Farrand can be reached at 570-742-9671 and via email at matt@standard-journal.com.

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