The Marketplace, Pulaski’s Tuesday evening farmers market, has some exciting family friendly events planned for the next two weeks. A Grand Reopening Casino Night will happen on July 27, 2021, with Back to School Night, sponsored by the T.G. Howard Community Center and the Pulaski Police Department, scheduled for the following week, August 3, 2021.
The Grand Reopening Casino Night at The Marketplace on July 27 will feature an amazing lineup of live music from local rockstars Don’t Quit Your Day Job. Bring your chairs and blankets for the lawn, because starting at 4:30 pm, band members Hank Hanks (vocals and rhythm guitar), Jon Cash (lead guitar and vocals), Darren Huff (keyboard and vocals), Corey Pless (bass and vocals), Chip Hanks (drums and vocals), and Dave Clark (vocals) will be joined by special guests Jeremy Hagy (electric guitar), Rick Reed (saxophone), Steve Jones (congo drums), and Alex Shelton (vocals) for an amazing night of local music. Two Broke Buns will have amazing food that night; their pulled pork BBQ nachos, BBQ sandwiches and chili dogs have been a hit the past few weeks.
Feeling lucky? The Marketplace is the best bet in town, especially on Casino Night! Market vendors and community partners have donated items such as a six-month individual membership at the YMCA of Pulaski County and a pair of season tickets to Adaire Theatre’s 2021 lineup, so make sure to stop by The Marketplace’s information table on July 27 for a free door prize ticket. Doors open at 4:00 pm, and prizes will be drawn all night until market close at 7:00 pm. For those that really want to try their luck, $1.00 will buy a 50/50 raffle ticket. The more tickets folks buy, the better their chances of winning, and the more folks who play, the bigger the 50/50 pot!
Back to School Night on August 3 is sponsored by the T.G. Howard Community Center and the Pulaski Police Department. The PCHS Golden Cougars Marching Band will kick off the evening at 4:00 pm, followed by a hands-on drum circle experience for kids and adults, led by Randolph UMC pastor Elston McLain. Tony Connor and Groove Kontrol/Groove Thang will have everyone jamming to live R&B, soul, and rock favorites beginning at 5:00 pm. Chairs, blankets, and boogie shoes are highly recommended. Bo and Weezy’s will be offering chicken tenders, fish, and their delicious honey biscuits, and while Two Broke Buns hasn’t finalized their Back to School Night menu, their food is always a crowd pleaser.
In partnership with Pulaski Moose Lodge #2087 and Spirit of Life Worship Center, the T.G. Howard Community Center will distribute free backpacks with school supplies during Back to School Night. Door prizes (including several kids’ bikes!), children’s and young adult book giveaways, and more activities are also planned. The Marketplace and the T.G. Howard Community Center will use social media channels to provide information on signing up for backpacks, as well as additional event details, so follow both organizations on Facebook and Instagram for the latest updates.
The Marketplace, which takes place, rain or shine, every Tuesday, May – October, from 4:00 – 7:00 pm at the historic Pulaski Train Station, has been a community hub for the last nine years. This season, the market is managed by Pulaski on Main, a local nonprofit organization focused on the economic revitalization of historic downtown Pulaski as part of the Virginia Main Street initiative. “Pulaski on Main is honored to partner with the Town of Pulaski to run The Marketplace this season,” said Binti Villinger, chairperson of The Marketplace planning committee and board member of Pulaski on Main and the T.G. Howard Community Center. “As Virginia began lifting COVID restrictions earlier this year, local outdoor farmers markets were one of the first state approved activities allowed to operate without mask mandates for vaccinated individuals,” she continued. “Since the 2021 market season started in May, The Marketplace has seen steady growth in both vendors and customers. We’re working to bring back some of the sense of community that so many of us have missed over the last year under quarantine,” said Villinger. “The fact that so many local organizations want to support and partner with us on upcoming events is a testament to Pulaski’s community spirit and the impact that The Marketplace still has around town.”
The Marketplace has recently focused on a few fun theme nights each month. “Casino Night and Back to School Night are going to be jam packed with fun activities and giveaways that we hope will draw families and community members back to The Marketplace,” said market manager Patrick Ford. Ford, who also serves as Director for Pulaski on Main, continued, “The more folks we can bring out to support our local farmers, wineries, small business owners, artisans, and musicians, the more vendors we attract. The more vendors we have at The Marketplace, the more customers we attract. While it can be a tricky balance to achieve, we are committed to providing an opportunity for local vendors to showcase their products while reestablishing The Marketplace as a destination for the community and a tourist attraction for the Town.”