City of Hobart gathers for Summer Market on the Lake

City of Hobart gathers for Summer Market on the Lake

Hobart’s Summer Market on the Lake has been happening for 11 years. This year, the market is back and bigger than ever. There is a variety of vendors who came from across the state to sell their treasured products.

“We have a lot more craft vendors this year,” said Nikki Lopez, City of Hobart event director. “I think during quarantine, everyone was home making things and now they’re trying to come out to sell them. We’re glad to be able to provide a venue for them to do so.”

Lopez’s sentiment about extra crafting during lockdown rang true for many vendors at the event.

“Last fall, I bought a greenhouse,” Heidi Herron-Johnson, owner of Whimsical Bird Houses said. “With COVID causing many stores to not have enough plants, I thought, ‘I will give this a shot.’ So I started growing all kinds of herbs, vegetables, and perennial flowers.”

Now that Hobart is back up and running, creators are able to sell what they love once again.

“I sell all kinds of different shapes of birdhouses, butterfly houses, and now I’m doing plants,” Herron-Johnson said. “I started with the birdhouses and I enjoy making different shapes, trying new things, and taking things that are repurposed, such as taking picket fences, and turning them into churches.”

Herron-Johnson drives up from Lafayette for the market and has been doing so for four years. She says no market by her hometown can replicate Hobart’s market.

There are dozens of vendors at the market and Lopez even had to turn some away. The market’s atmosphere feels like a mini-fair ground with places to eat, musicians to watch, and the lingering smell of elephant ears.

Aimee Schallenkamp works for Maria Reiner Senior Center and was manning its Book Barn. They take donated books and resell them as a way to fundraise for the Center’s other events. They often have the barn at the Center, but during the summer they bring it to the market.

“We’re the senior center here in Hobart. We provide services for people 55 and older,” Schallenkamp said. “We’re more like a community social center. We’re located on fourth street and we have different activities that go on throughout the day such as meals, exercise classes, art classes, puzzles, games; you name it, we have it.”

Schallenkamp has been working with the Center for five years, and the book barn has been part of her whole time there.

“This is one of our biggest events and it runs throughout the summer,” said Lopez. “We do have a community pool and a lot of communities don’t anymore, so we do a lot of teen pool parties. We’re trying to hit that teenage demographic every year, but this year especially. We have a lot of kids ages seventh to tenth grade in the parks without a lot of things to do. We have a lake-front festival every year, which is probably our biggest event of the year.”

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