First Common Spirit Celebration Hungers for More

Dec. 7, 2017 — Northfield Farmers’ Market (NFM) vendors and patrons at the inaugural Common Spirit outdoor holiday market raised $1,248 for the Vermont Foodbank which was generated from vendor fees, donated vendor product sales, and a raffle. The Common Spirit Celebration, an old-fashioned, European-style outdoor Christmas market was held on the Common in conjunction with the town’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Friday, December 1.     
The Vermont Foodbank estimates that for each $3 donated, they are able to buy five meals. That means the Common Spirit donation will feed 2,080 meals to Vermonters in need — enough to feed one Vermonter a meal a day for almost six years. 

“Being the first time we’ve tried this type of market event, we had no idea what to expect. But the people of Northfield came through in showing their community spirit in every conceivable way,” said NFM market manager Cassie Morse. “I am humbled to be part of such a terrific community and thank everyone for their participation in so many ways. We look forward to building on this year’s success next December.”
The NFM recognizes the following for their roles in making the event a success: Kenyon’s Hardware, EJZ Fabrication & Forgeworks, Northfield Savings Bank, the Northfield Community Development Network, the Northfield Recreation Committee, the American Legion, Norwich University cadet volunteers, the participating businesses on and around the Common, the Northfield Police Department, the Town of Northfield, and the Common Spirit vendors:

  • William Barnard
  • Brigham Family Maple
  • Brookfield Bees
  • Catamount Solar
  • Cheryl Ann's Homemade
  • Farmor Farm
  • Fresh Tracks Farm & Vineyard
  • Green Mountain Girls Farm
  • Khaos Designs
  • Ned's Best Beef
  • Sun Common Solar
  • Shute Designs
  • Tossy Garrett & Sons
  • Turkey Hill Maple Farm
  • Two Wood Spoons
  • ZZ Crop
The contribution is comprised of three sources. First, the NFM’s “Fees for Food” vendor cost program for the Common Spirit event donates all application fees to the Vermont Foodbank. Second, the NFM raffled fire pits fabricated from recycled propane tanks donated by Kenyon’s Hardware and crafted by Vermont blacksmith and welder Eric Zuaro. Third, a number of vendors donated a portion of their proceeds from sales at this special market.  

“We are sincerely grateful to the Northfield Farmers’ Market vendors and patrons for stepping up to help our neighbors facing hunger,” said Vermont Foodbank CEO John Sayles. “They set a compelling example of how we can each use our different skills and crafts to be part of the important work of making our community strong. It is only by coming together in this way that we can tackle the complex issue of hunger and transform the lives of our neighbors.”


Come for the Tree Lighting, Stay for the Market

Northfield Farmers’ Market will host The Common Spirit Celebration, an old-fashioned, European-style outdoor Christmas market on the Common (also known as Depot Square) in conjunction with the town’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Friday, December 1, 2017 from 3-9 p.m. Applications are now being accepted from farmers, food vendors, crafters, artists, church groups and other organizations for this special market event where folks can buy holiday gifts locally in one fun, festive place. “You don’t have to travel to Chicago, Pittsburgh, Paris or Germany to enjoy a traditional outdoor Christmas market,” said Mary Nadon Scott, president of Northfield Farmers’ Market (NFM). “You can savor mulled cider, artisanal handcrafts, yummy treats and holiday music right here in Northfield. 
The Common Spirit is a perfect way for to share good cheer and celebrate community spirit together — and to buy local for your everyone on your gift list.” The Common Spirit market will use a “Fees for Food” vendor cost program in which all fees for this special market event will donated to The Vermont Foodbank. Each $10 seasonal vendor fee will buy three meals, and each $30 day vendor fee will buy 50 meals for Vermonters in need. This special holiday event is part of the Market’s winter season that starts Sunday, Nov. 5, and is held indoors monthly at Norwich University’s Plumley Armory through April 8. The Common Spirit will be Northfield’s first outdoor winter market, an event that has become a tradition stateside as a refreshing alternative to the holiday big-box shopping frenzy. Folks can leisurely stroll around the farm, food and craft stands on the Common, as well as Depot Square businesses including Depot Square Pizzeria, O’Maddi’s Delaraunt, Craft Beer Armory, Cornerstone Burger, and Good Measure Brewing Co.    
A nearby indoor venue will house artists requiring a climate-controlled environment for their works. Lighting, spot heaters, fire pits, snow-free tent spaces and walking paths will create a comfortable, festive winter atmosphere for Santa’s arrival, expected by fire truck amid great fanfare. Norwich University student volunteers will assist with vendor set-up and tear-down, snow removal and sanding if needed, and traffic control. Off-street parking will be available at the Northfield Police Department. Leashed pets are welcome with responsible owner clean-up.
Hours of Operation
Summer (Tuesday)
Depot Square
3:00 pm - 6:00 pm 

Winter (Sunday)
Plumley Armory, Norwich University
11:00 am - 2:00 pm
PO Box 321
Northfield, Vt