Small businesses set up shop at Upland Farmers Market

Shirley Garrison, owner of Paris Maison Garrison, and assistant Bella Sharkey talk with Rachelle Withers, founder of Withers Insurance, about the clothes being sold Feb. 12 at the Downtown Upland Farmers Market. The market is located at 460 N Euclid Ave. in the City Hall parking lot and is open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. / photo by Nathan Driscoll
Shirley Garrison, owner of Paris Maison Garrison, and assistant Bella Sharkey talk with Rachelle Withers, founder of Withers Insurance, about the clothes being sold Feb. 12 at the Downtown Upland Farmers Market. The market is located at 460 N. Euclid Ave. in the City Hall parking lot and is open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. / photo by Nathan Driscoll

Joseph Chavez
Staff Writer

The Downtown Upland Farmers Market had many artisans selling their goods to the people who attended Saturday.

There was a live music performance at the market from a three-member band, with two of them playing guitars, one acoustic and another a bass, and one vocalist. The band took requests from visitors at the market which spanned from classic rock to modern pop songs. With the music playing in the background, families went around and shopped at the stands.

Community members walked around with baked treats, while others had bought second-hand goods or handmade jewelry, among a variety of items to see and buy.

Shakei DeLeon, owner of Mon Sweetss, had been selling her baked goods for about 12 years at the Upland Market. Her stand offered a variety of brownies, cinnamon rolls with apple pie filling and topping, a variety of cookies and Rice Krispies. DeLeon even sells homemade healthy dog treats.

She said that baking has always been her passion.

“It started off as my backup career,” she said. “I did everything I was supposed to. I went to college, did the four years,” DeLeon said. “But then (MonSweetss) was what I always wanted, so I came back to baking and I had to do it.  I never find it like work, it’s… relaxing, and it’s therapeutic.”

Another booth at the market, Bee Aligned, run by Luz Conner, has been selling mystical wellness items and jewelry such as dreamcatchers, crystals, incense sage and essential oils, at the Upland Market since 2020.  Some of the jewelry at their shop is handmade and some are from gem shows, Connor said.

“I had always been told when you own your own small business it should be something that you are passionate about,” Connor said. “Share your love of it with others.” 

Connor said Bee Aligned provides  “tools” for spiritual healing.

“We don’t claim to be spiritual healers, we provide the tools for each person to become their own,” Connor said. 

Community members perused and shopped the Market offerings, and chatted with various vendors and one another. 

“I love it here because there are so many small businesses and it makes me feel like I’m supporting something while getting something genuine back,” said Upland resident Maria Santos, who was at the market Saturday. 

Visitors seemed to enjoy the sense of community, which has been harder to find lately during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s great coming down here because I get to see familiar and different faces of the people who live in Upland,”  said George Jones of Upland, who attended the market Saturday. “It feels great to be together with others especially after the pandemic.” 

The Downtown Upland Farmers Market is located at the City Hall parking lot in Upland at 460 N Euclid Ave. It is open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Joseph Chavez can be reached at joseph.chavez2@laverne.edu.

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