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Farmers markets stay open across Oregon with new guidelines

Some Lane County residents expressed concern after seeing the farmers market taking place in Eugene over the weekend.

Posted: Mar 30, 2020 8:30 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Some Lane County residents expressed concern upon seeing the farmers market take place in Eugene this weekend, but officials say extra precautions are being taken to ensure the safety of the public.

“I was watching the newscast where people were standing right next to each other and it seems people have incredibly short memories and forget just how important it is we protect ourselves," said Kathleen Gage, a Lane County resident.

Kelly Crane, the executive director of the Oregon Farmers Market Association, said strict social distancing is being enforced at farmers markets across the state of Oregon. 

“Each farmers market and each farmers market vendor booth have to appoint a social distancing officer who is in charge of ensuring that people who are in their spaces are actually complying with the social distancing requirements,” said Crane. 

But Gage said those policies might not be enough to keep the public safe. 

“I actually went grocery shopping yesterday and I was really pleased with the fact that they were keeping people a certain distance apart before they went into the store they were sanitizing the carts," said Gage. 

But Brian Richardson with the City of Eugene said that big changes were made to keep the farmers market open, one of which including the size of where it operates downtown.

“Working with the farmers market to expand the footprint, it's no longer the way it was last year. It’s on a much larger footprint to allow more room," said Richardson.

Crane said for years they had worked to develop the social community aspect into farmers markets, but now their main focus is stripping that away and making sure people are only going to the market to get their essential goods.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 154062

Reported Deaths: 2194
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah31723527
Washington21001211
Marion18279284
Clackamas13289175
Lane10127124
Jackson8224110
Umatilla761481
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Yamhill374564
Linn354956
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Jefferson194127
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Union127119
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Lincoln112520
Hood River106129
Morrow104114
Crook77918
Clatsop7766
Baker6467
Curry4116
Tillamook4092
Lake3746
Harney2716
Grant2221
Wallowa1424
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Sherman530
Wheeler221
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