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Folks enjoy new farmers market in Carbondale

An organization in Lackawanna County has an idea to address a need for fresh produce and fresh conversation in one community.

CARBONDALE, Pa. — People lined up on this sunny morning to purchase fresh blueberries, cherries, and tomatoes from Dalton-based Purple Pepper Farms during the first day of a new farmers market in Carbondale.

Folks who live here tell us they don't have much access to fresh fruits and vegetables, so this market definitely fills a need.

"I think it's great because the closest one is down in Scranton or maybe if you're traveling through the country," John Rosar said.

And vendors were excited to participate too. Katrina Iannuzzi started selling soap made from goat's milk during the pandemic after losing her job.

"I think it's nice because neighbors get to meet each other, people get to meet new friends, and buy good quality products."

This time last year, we showed you when this new community area was still under construction.

RELATED: New affordable housing development nearly completed in Lackawanna County

The United Neighborhood Centers of Northeastern Pennsylvania repurposed a crumbling, vacant building into an affordable housing development that would also be used for community programs, like this farmers market.

"I think it's great to have this here in town. Nothing like a fresh tomato, right?" Lynnae White said.

"I've been wondering about coming up here. It's nice. I'm shocked by it all," Elaine Van Leuven said.

"We've had well over 100 people come through in the first hour, and not only are they doing a little shopping, they're really connecting with neighbors they haven't seen in a long time," said Lisa Durkin, CEO of United Neighborhood Centers.

The United Neighborhood Centers hope to have the market fully open, with more vendors, and more customers, by the end of the summer. By September, the farmers market in Carbondale will be open every Thursday year-round.