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Parks and rec launches Hardeeville farmers market, kids camp

  • Liz Bloom/Jasper County Sun Times - Locally grown produce as well as meats were sold.
  • Becky DalSanto/Special to JCST The most recent city of Hardeeville summer camp featured soccer.

Becky DalSanto isn’t really new to Hardeeville. She’s been here almost a year working for the city as an intern with Parks and Recreation Director Addison Jarrell.

During the past year, she’s helped with many events, including the city’s Easter egg celebration and football games at the recreation center.

After receiving a full-time job offer from the city, which she will start in July, she jumped full-steam-ahead into implementing two projects for the city this summer: kids summer day camps and a weekly farmers market.

The farmers market, which was unveiled June 19, is DalSanto’s first solo project.

DalSanto lives in Pooler and enjoys the farmers market at Forsyth Park in Savannah on the weekends, but she’s from a smaller town in the Midwest and grew up going to the farmers market. So she’s brought it to Hardeeville.

The weekly market will be 4-7 p.m. every Monday, except holidays.

“There’s a lot of competition for farmers markets out there. Savannah has one in Forsyth, and Bluffton has one too,” DalSanto, 22, said. “So we we’re thinking Mondays because it’s the first day of the work week and people tend to run errands, buy groceries on Monday after work. We decided on 4-7 p.m. because we wanted to avoid that heat and be available after people got off work.”

She looks to highlight local growers in the community. Last Monday, the market featured five vendors, with everything from fresh fruits to house plants and ice cream.

As it grows, DalSanto wants to bring in craftsmen, but for now she’s focusing on produce. Ideally, the market, which meets on the lawns behind City Hall, would hold about 30 vendors.

Summer kids camps

Along with two other Parks and Rec interns, DalSanto has introduced a revamped kids camp program for the summer. Last summer, the city hosted a few children’s camps, but they did not bring kids out in the numbers they’d hoped. So DalSanto, along with the other interns, came up with themed camps held bi-weekly. Themes range from culinary camp to soccer camp to nature camp, and range from two to three days.

The summer camps feature classic games like tennis and baseball, but also provide opportunities for children to learn a new skill or facts. It’s a fun balance between education and activity.

Kids camps are every other week. The full schedule of the camps is on the city of Hardeeville’s website.

The camps actually came as an extension of Hardeeville’s Parents’ Night Out, which is held every other Friday during the summer. From 5-9 p.m., parents can drop off their kids at city hall, where they can play and participate in games and crafts while parents can go out for a date.

For more information, call Parks and Recreation Director Addison Jarrell at 843-784-2231 or email Becky DalSanto at bdalsanto@cityofhardeeville.com.

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