New Farmer's Market Seeks Larger Demographic of Ithaca's Residents

June 12 marked the opening of the Congo Square Market at Ithaca’s Southside Community Center. Advertising live music, delectable Cuban cuisine, local produce and textile vendors, 305 S. Plain Street promised a cultural feast for the senses.

Despite the success of the Ithaca Farmer’s Market at Steamboat Landing, the new market came to be in response to claims that only a small demographic of Ithacans utilize the Steamboat Landing market’s resources. This new market — which is open on Fridays from 4:00-8:00 p.m. through Sept. 4 — represents just one of several recent efforts to extend the offerings of the Ithaca Farmer’s Market to a more diverse group of Ithacans, including lower income residents and ethnic communities.

Johnson Program Helps Local Small Businesses

BR MicroCapital, a microfinance business started at the Johnson Graduate School of Management, announced on Jan. 20 that it would offer lending and business support services to help microbusiness development in Tompkins County.
In a press release, Mike Pezone, grad, director of operations for BRM, explained that BRM’s work is fulfilling a local need by providing specialized, targeted support for microbusinesses, which are small businesses typically operated from the owner’s home.
The stated goal of BRM is to encourage development and inclusive wealth creation while at the same time assisting efforts to further local economic development.