Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Clearwater squashes farmer's market at Countryside High

The Dunedin Green Market’s former manager was planning to start a Sunday market in Countryside High School’s parking lot.

JIM DAMASKE | Times (2011)

The Dunedin Green Market’s former manager was planning to start a Sunday market in Countryside High School’s parking lot.

CLEARWATER — City zoning rules have blocked Richard Kendler, the Dunedin man who last week lost his longtime management contract for that city's Green Market, from launching a new venture in Clearwater.

For weeks, Kendler had been advertising the Nov. 10 opening of an open-air Sunday market on Countryside High School's parking lot. Pinellas County school officials had said a portion of proceeds from the weekly market, set to run through mid May, would be donated to the school.

However, confusion arose this week after city officials caught wind of the plan and informed both Kendler and the school district that farmer's markets run afoul of city code, which forbids "itinerant sales" on private property except in short-term cases (such as for Christmas tree or pumpkin sales).

Officials acknowledge that internal miscommunication may have led Kendler to believe he had the city's permission. But City Manager Bill Horne ultimately said that code enforcement would cite the market if it opened.

"We'd have to change code to allow for those sales," said city spokeswoman Joelle Castelli. "We are in the process right now of going back to the School Board and reiterating that (the market) is not allowed to happen on that property."

The news comes less than a week after Dunedin city commissioners approved a city committee's recommendation to hire Tampa Bay Markets to manage the city's Green Market instead of Kendler, its founder and longtime manager.

Commissioners said Kendler had done a good job so far, but his competitor offered concrete plans for growth and three times more rent.

At the time, Kendler said he had been planning the Countryside market since about August. He declined to comment for this story.

The school district confirmed Friday that Kendler had signed a lease, which states that the holder must meet any governmental requirements in its location.

According to Castelli, in September Kendler spoke with Clearwater planning director Michael Delk, who told him "no."

Subsequently, city special events committee chairman Christopher Hubbard told Kendler he didn't need a special events permit and indicated he had city support. However, both Castelli and Hubbard say zoning laws supersede special events decisions.

"It's possible that (Kendler) left that communication thinking it was okay," Castelli said. "But it still has to be approved through zoning."

The city already hosts the Downtown Clearwater Farmer's Market, which is aimed at boosting local tourism, under a provision that allows long-term itinerant sales for city co-sponsored special events. Officials recently halted the Gateway Farmer's Market on Cleveland Street — possibly permanently — amid complaints from nearby merchants that market visitors took their parking spaces and frustrated regular customers.

Horne said city administrators have declined to dedicate resources toward a partnership with Kendler's Countryside Community Market.

Keyonna Summers can be reached at (727) 445-4153 or ksummers@tampabay.com. To write a letter to the editor, go to tampabay.com/letters.

Clearwater squashes farmer's market at Countryside High 10/22/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, October 22, 2013 6:24pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up

    Blogs

    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  2. Tampa Bay Times honored for top investigative story in Gerald Loeb annual business awards

    Business

    The Tampa Bay Times was a co-winner in the investigative category for one of the highest honors in business journalism.

    Tampa Bay Times current and former staff writers William R. Levesque, Nathaniel Lash and Anthony Cormier were honored in the investigative category for their coverage of "Allegiant Air" in the 60th Anniversary Gerald Loeb Awards for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism. 
[JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times

]

  3. Pasco woman gives birth to child fathered by 11 year old, deputies say

    Crime

    A Port Richey woman was arrested Tuesday, nearly three years after deputies say she gave birth to a child fathered by an 11-year-old boy.

    Marissa Mowry, 25, was arrested Tuesday on charges she sexually assaulted an 11-year-old and gave birth to his child. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. For good of the Rays, Tim Beckham should embrace move to second

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — The acquisition of slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria said a lot of things, most notably that the Rays are serious about making in-season moves to bolster their chances to make the playoffs, with a reliever, or two, next on the shopping list.

    PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 27:  Tim Beckham #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates with teammates after scoring during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) 700011399
  5. St. Petersburg showdown: Kriseman faces Baker for first time tonight at the Rev. Louis Murphy Sr.'s church

    Local Government

    A standing-room-only crowd packed a Midtown church banquet hall Tuesday to witness the first face-off between Mayor Rick Kriseman and former mayor Rick Baker in what is a watershed mayoral contest in the city's history.

    Former Mayor Rick Baker, left, is challenging incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman, right, to become St. Petersburg mayor.