The Dickinson Avenue Farmers and Makers Market features local businesses and up-and- coming artists in the uptown Greenville region.
Located at 714 Dickinson Ave. in Greenville, the store opened earlier this year, March 15. The market features fresh produce, succulents and plants, art and other locally-made products. Ryan Webb is the owner of the market, said every product is made or grown within 50 miles of Greenville.
“There’s other consignment-based shops but this is one of the first things that mixes farmers with makers,” Webb said.
Webb said the majority of vendors also participate in the Uptown Greenville Umbrella Market. The Umbrella Market is a weekly event featured during the summer months, made to grow and enhance small businesses local to Greenville. It is featured at Five Points Plaza from May through August every Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m.
“It’s like an open-air market that many of my vendors are out there and through just word of mouth kind of found us,” Webb said.
Webb said local works from Pitt, Beaufort and Craven County residents have been featured at the farmers and makers market and it will continue to grow. He said, as for their targeting audience, the market caters towards the young professionals in town and the visitors Greenville brings in.
“I think being in an arts district like this is important to keep lower-level prices for artists to be able to actually get in front of people and so this way since we have such a big space for people to have different price points,” Webb said.
One area to the left of the shop hosts the work of Steve Ralis, a Philadelphia native and current Winterville resident who has worked as an information technology professional who discovered his talent for painting after battling multiple sclerosis in 2016.
“It changed a lot of things about my life, and one of those was I couldn’t do the work I used to do anymore but suddenly I could do art,” Ralis said. “I never had a desire to make art until I was in the hospital and just had this passion to start making art and it really hasn’t stopped… it’s amazing how that brain works.”
Ralis said he mainly paints organic scenes such as nature, flowers, trees and landscapes focusing on digital, watercolor and acrylics. He said he sometimes paints portraits and architecture too. Ralis said Webb came to speak about the market at an artist group gather which Ralis is a member of, the Greenville Brush Strokes.
“Ryan gave me an opportunity to sell my art which I never sold before,” Ralis said. “Mainly when I paint, it makes me happy when I do and the opportunity to share that happiness with others kind of completes the circle.”
Webb also brings in one coffee roasting business from Ayden, North Carolina, Lanoca Coffee Company. Lanoca Coffee Company’s owner, Matthew Wright, said Lanoca is an artisanal local-made coffee roasting company which creates specialty coffee and teas versus the mass-produced grocery aisles and tries to bring education to their roasting.
“It has given us a more permanent place because before we would do periodic vendor markets at Uptown Brewery but what the Farmers and Makers Market has done is allow others to know that they can come there versus all the way out to Ayden,” Wright said.
Lanoca offers Columbian, Peruvian and Brazilian roasts and cold brew coffee. Other products include Baratza Grinders, Chemex Brewers and smaller provisions. Wright said the restaurant Ford + Shep uses Lanoca for their coffee and teas as well as in some of their savory dishes and cocktails.
“We’ll utilize our market there in uptown to continue to bring in new fresh product and to help build our brand through tastings and demonstrations there as the seasons may change,” Wright said.