It's the end of an era.
On Wednesday, May 9th, 2014 we set up a tent at the Leesburg Wednesday Farmers Market on Noshy's very first day out in the wild. We were selling bags of cookies sealed with a purple twist tie for $4/bag. I'm sure if I dug into my records from that day I'd be able to tell you which cookie was our first sale. But a dollar bill from that sale is still framed and in my office.
We had the idea for Noshy (and grabbed the social handles and URL) in December 2013 and spent the next spent several months getting our ducks in a row. Cookie testing, license getting, permit approving, etc. Then-market-coordinator Kathryn of the Leesburg Farmers Market was the only market system to approve us assuming we had all our paperwork and inspections sorted before that first market day. (All other markets we had applied to needed us to be sorted before we even applied. That would have meant that we wouldn't have started until the 2014 winter season, not until 2015, or (if any of you know me very well) perhaps not at all.)
But all our licenses, permits, inspections, and the like same through like a bright sunny day after a rainstorm just before market opened that year. We were all set to go.
I remember being nervous on that first day. Would people like the cookies? Would I like this work? Did I bake enough cookies? (They would, I did, I didn't.)
For the next 363 weeks we've been in at least one farmers market every week (minus the week following Christmas each year and those three weeks in 2018 we closed while I was on honeymoon).
We've done weekday markets, weekend markets, one-off markets, markets in Loudoun County, Arlington County, Fairfax County and Montgomery County. One year we had five (5!) separate markets each week! At one point we had eleven (11!) staff members helping us bake, pack, and sell all the deliciousness. (Interestingly, these two things did not occur in the same year. HA!) We've sold over 51,000 (FIFTY. ONE. THOUSAND.) cookie bags, tins, sandwich cookies, poptarts, brownies, and more to you lovely humans shopping our farmers markets since that first day in 2014 (yes, we counted).
We've grown from a wee little company doing one farmers market a week to a wee little empire shipping cookies, servicing coffee shops, offering baking kits, classes, and subscriptions, baking for large corporations and their clients/employees, baking for weddings, baby showers, and all manner of other celebrations, and delivering the delicousness to taste buds all over the country.
Fast forward to May 8th, 2021. Farmers markets around the DMV will set up that weekend for their first market of the summer season. Empty parking lots, streets, and fields will transform into a sea of tents under which will be sold the best local produce, farm-raised whathaveyou, and other food and craft items hand made/raised/grown by people all over the area.
And for the first time in 7 years, Noshy won't be there.
Selling at a farmers market is very rewarding (spiritually, emotionally, financially) but is also a lot of work (mentally, physically, financially). It's been an honor to have been a part of the Loudoun Valley Homegrown Markets Cooperative, Columbia Pike Farmers Markets, Fairfax County Farmers Markets, Montgomery Women's Farm Cooperative and more over the last six and a half years.
While we won't miss the windy days that try to blow all the cookies off the table, or the scorching hot days that try to melt both us and the cookies, we will miss the camaraderie with our fellow vendors and customers. We'll miss your smiling faces and your kiddos asking for "chocolate chippies" every weekend for their special treat.
Weekend by weekend, we've been a part of your lives. Little kids who now are old enough to hand over a few bucks and ask for the cookies they want were just dreams or baby bumps when we started. We've celebrated with you, mourned with you, and laughed with you. Even if you weren't a regular, we enjoyed saying hello to you each week or however often it was you came to the market.
As one passerby once hilariously said to us and our fellow vendor neighbor (selling granola at the time), we're your favorite "carb pushers" and it's been an honor to see all of your smiling faces each week. (Or, smiling eyes, as is the case in a masked world.)
Do not despair. While we're taking a step back from Farmers Markets (for now? forever? unclear.) we are 100% still available for you and all your cookie (and more!) needs.
We're constantly looking for new opportunities to serve you locally but in the meantime you can:
- order cookies, subscriptions, kits, and more at getnoshy.com (nationwide shipping!)
- email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a local pickup or delivery (until our website can handle those requests) or place a custom order (sandwich cookies, anyone?)
- pick up sandwich cookies, poptarts, brownies, or (soon!) VEGAN COOKIES at Ridgetop Coffee in Sterling.
- friend/follow us on social @getnoshy (facebook, instagram, twitter) and share all the cookie love with us
- sign up for our email newsletter to make sure you are up to date on all the latest news, cookies, and fun stuff we're up to.
While it is the end of an era, we continue to look forward to making your lives memorably scrumptious. For all your Wednesdays, weddings, and everything in between we remain your favorite cookie bakers.
With much love and a lot of cookies,