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Salem Public Market

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Oregon's Oldest Farmers Market

Salem Public Market


In 1943, Salem homemakers had an enjoyable and long-established custom of driving to farms and orchards in Marion and Polk counties during midsummer and Autumn to buy fresh fruits and vegetables for preserving, making jelly and freezing. The inconvenience of tight gasoline rationing was keenly felt in Salem. A Salem native, who was familiar with 'Saturday Tailgate Markets' in California and knew that farm-truck owners had more liberal gasoline rationing than city dwellers, went to a meeting of the Salem City Council and asked them to authorize the holding of the tailgate market on Saturdays at the south end of Marion Square and on the street alongside.

Wind and rain made continuing the outdoor enterprise impractical. Then the suppliers sought out some means of selling their produce within some type of shelter. Through a trustee, they rented vacant land at the northeast corner of High and Union Streets. Two of the enthusiastic farmers bought the property. The whole group put together a building using lumber, windows and other material from Camp Adair, where dismantling of the old buildings was in progress. Salem Public Market was incorporated as a non-profit on April 19th, 1944.

In 1946 members of the corporation bought and paid for the present market site at 1240 Rural Ave SE. There were no buyers for the building at High and Union Street. So market members took down that building and rebuilt it at Rural St. Much of the labor was volunteer, as it is today.

For additional information or vendor inquires please contact Roy at (503) 769-1257 or Thank you.

'Oregon’s Oldest Farmers 

Oregon’s oldest farmers market is open year round every Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 pm.

Salem Public Market is located indoors year round at 1240 Rural Ave. SE in Salem, just 9 blocks south of historic Deepwood Estates, between 12th and 13th streets. For more information, call 503-623-6605.
Traditionally, If Christmas Eve or Christmas Day falls on a Saturday, Salem Public Market will hold a SPECIAL MARKET on the Wednesday before and close Saturday for Christmas so we all may enjoy this holiday with friends and families.

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