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City of Tonawanda hoping to add outdoor Sunday market

A Sunday City Market is coming to the City of Tonawanda.

The new draw is expected to be opened to the public on Young Street, between Main Street and the Hub, on from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Sundays, from May to October.

The plan for an open air market, which would feature a farmers market, crafters, produce vendors, food trucks and nonprofit groups, was presented to the Common Council last week and received positive reviews. The plan will go before the council for approval at its next meeting, scheduled for April 3.

"I think it's a very exciting idea," said Common Council President Jenna Koch.

The Council is dealing with issues related to the six-month closure of Young Street, between Main and Broad streets, and will decide whether to make the closure permanent on May 1. The city used the closure to put up an outdoor ice rink and hold a New Year's Eve ball drop. This section of Young Street, along the Erie Canal, is also closed annually for Canal Fest.

City of Tonawanda Common Council closes Young Street for 6 months

City Administrative Assistant Charles Gilbert said if the street reopens, it will be closed for the market on Sundays.

He noted that downtown businesses owners have supported the road closure, as did residents who attended a meeting last summer.

The street closing and an artisan market are part of the Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan, which also includes a plan to build a roundabout at Young and Broad streets.

Gilbert said the plan is to offer the market for 24 weeks, from May to October, with the exception of the two weeks in July when Canal Fest is held.

Farmers will be able to purchase a $250 season pass for a space and may purchase up to three spaces. Other vendors would have to purchase spaces for the season at $10 a week. Nonprofit groups would be charged $8 a week. Thirty spaces are expected to be available in the approximately 470-foot long area.

The Common Council plans to hire a market manager to oversee the market each Sunday.

Gilbert said the City of Tonawanda chose Sundays so it would not directly compete with other area markets, such as the popular one in nearby North Tonawanda.

"We'd also like to offer different events to coincide with the market," Gilbert said.

He said city officials hope the market will draw more people to downtown.

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