(Courtesy Photo/The Mattesons)
Following the announcement of her retirement earlier in 2021, Downtown Owosso Farmers Market Director Tracey Peltier was faced with the last season of heading up the passion project she worked for years to develop. Now heading toward the end of the 2021 market season, Peltier is pleased at the successful outcome.
As the director for 12 years, Peltier considers all of the work a “real labor of love.” She offered that she is both “super excited for the future of the market and excited she is no longer going to be responsible.”
“This has been such an amazing experience. It has truly been an honor,” Peltier shared.
Several months ago, it had been a goal to locate just the right individual to step into the market master/director position. That person has since been found. Josephine Brown, who lives on a small farm south of Owosso, will be the new director.
“I am so excited for the future of the market,” Peltier shared. “Bringing Josephine on. This is such a perfect fit of what I had envisioned would be the next step. There is such potential for the market to grow.”
Brown has been shadowing Peltier for sometime – learning the ins and outs of operating the popular, open air market in downtown Owosso. She moved to Owosso from Traverse City with her husband, Brian, and their two small children. Brian and Josephine are originally from Fowlerville, so they are familiar with the area. They have lived in several places in the state: most recently for five years in Traverse City before settling in Owosso.
“Ensuring the markets continued success has always been my priority,” Peltier said. “There has been a strategic plan all along, starting two years ago. Now, with Josephine, I can take a deep breath.”
Peltier and Brown connected through a mutual friend and it was quickly obvious Brown was the right person for the position.
Brown has a background in graphic design, events planning and flower design. She and her husband began looking for a new home in the area, knowing they wanted a farm. When a farm came up in their search and was centrally located to family and met all of their wishes, they quickly bought it.
Brown describes herself as a creative person and was intrigued by the Owosso area because of its creative vibe – a large draw for their family. She loves growing flowers and flower design – having done flower arrangements for weddings. She has participated in the Downtown Owosso Farmers Market as a vendor, selling flowers. Her first experience with the market was a visit to a Moonlight Market. That was the experience she and her husband found truly inspiring.
Regarding upcoming market ventures, Josephine will start off with a “business as usual” approach with plans to always seek out new and unique vendors. She has plans to reintroduce the Moonlight Market in the future. She is now working to host a Holiday Market at the Armory on Thursday, Dec. 2. The event will be from 5 to 8 p.m. and will include a variety of crafters and artisans. Interested vendors can email email@example.com for more information.
“These vendors are really like family,” Josephine shared about the market. “They’ve been very welcoming.”
Peltier wished to extend her gratitude to all of the many market supporters that have helped her through the years.
Saturday, Oct. 30 will mark the end of the 2020 market season in Owosso – and the bittersweet retirement of Peltier. The final market will also see the downtown trick-or-treater event and market kid’s day fun. Trick-or-treating will begin at noon and continue throughout the market and downtown until 1 p.m.