Sammamish Farmers Market
In 2007 the Sammamish Chamber of Commerce was engaged by Community Leaders and Members as the ideal organization to create a farmer’s market in the City of Sammamish. Recognizing the need and that no other organization, including the City, wanted to take on this task, the Chamber led by President, Joe Hochman decided in 2007 to form a steering Committee led by 2008 Chamber President, Dawn Sanders. The Committee constituted Chamber members, Community residents and the Chamber President Dawn Sanders. The Chamber CEO, Deb Sogge, was added to this steering committee in 2008. The City, as an early sponsor of the Farmer’s Market and a Chamber Member, gave $20,000 in sponsorship funds to promote itself to the public and in recognition of the financial risk the Chamber incurred from solely creating and operating this new venture to the benefit of the Community as a whole. The Chamber successfully engaged the Community in the Farmer’s Market project by creating a public contest to create the Farmer’s Market logo. The winning artist agreed to relinquish ownership of the new logo to the Sammamish Chamber. A Community resident and website master, Tim Taricco, created on behalf of the Sammamish Chamber the website, SammamishFarmersMarket.org.
The Sammamish Chamber of Commerce created and has solely operated the farmers market since first opening in 2008. The City of Sammamish volunteered their Commons Park as the venue to host the Sammamish Farmers Market. Ben Yazici wanted NO responsibility for the operation of the market and in fact, it was his intention that the Farmer’s Market would off-set the cost of operation for the Chamber. SCC charges rent for the space that a vendor uses at $30 per stall fee each week. This money and sponsor money, including the $10,000 sponsorship the City gave SCC as a sponsorship fee is what pays the expenses for the market and promotes the Chamber Member in kind each season. The expenses can range from $38,000 to $58,000 each year. SCC does not make a net profit as the profit goes back into funding all the market expenses.
The Sammamish Commons created as a meeting place for Sammamish residents, was an ideal location for the Farmer’s Market. The City and Chamber entered into an agreement each year since it’s inception for use of the Sammamish Commons area to host the Farmers Market at the Sammamish Commons and agree the City would sponsor the Market and promote itself, at $10,000.
As of April, 2020, the City of Sammamish took action, making the safety of their residents a priority, cancelling all events at the Sammamish Commons. All farmer’s markets in our region have planned a Covid-19 safe market approved by the King County Department of Public Health.
The Sammamish Chamber of Commerce’s Farmer’s Market is recognized by the State of Washington as an essential business activity. In compliance with all State and County standards and regulations, the SCC will host its annual Farmer’s Market in support of the Community and local farmers who depend on the assistance of the Sammamish Chamber.
Consumer safety is our priority as we operate the market during this unprecedented time of need.