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Layton Park makes its mark

Liz Whiting, a vendor, selling her succulents

Crowds bustle through rows of vendors. Food trucks line the street, filling the air with salty and sweet aromas. Families set up lawn games in the grass, as they listen to a local band play covers of songs like “Ain’t No Sunshine.” These are the sights, sounds and smells of Layton FEST.

Layton FEST, which stands for Farmers, Entertainment, Shopping and food Trucks, is an open air market that takes place in Layton City’s Commons Park. It occurs every summer on Fridays from 5:30 p.m. until dusk, starting July 14 and going until August 25.

The market is a great opportunity for small businesses, as local farmers and vendors can apply to have a booth to sell their wares. A little bit of everything is sold. At the market on July 14, the booths sold items ranging from press-on nails, birdhouses, succulents and stickers.

Jade Connelly is one such vendor. Using a Cricut and a hand press, Connelly makes custom tee shirts, cups and more. This is her first year selling after she heard about it through a friend who has sold there before.

“We didn’t even know that it was an actual thing and that it occurred every year until my friend had mentioned it,” Connelly said.

Connelly said both her and her friend feel that Layton FEST has increased in popularity in the past few years, both for shoppers and vendors. According to her, getting the application back took longer this year than previous years because of how many applications were received.

Liz Whiting, another vendor, sold succulents at the event. She talked about the city’s selectiveness about which booths get a spot. She said from her experience, the city prefers handcrafted products instead of resale items.

Getting a booth is becoming so competitive now because of the great opportunity it provides for newer small businesses.

“You get a lot of interaction and contact with the local community,” Connelly said.

A Layton FEST booth is also less expensive than other venues. Connelly said a booth costs $20 a day for the market, whereas at the Davis Conference Center, rates can be around $100 for a single day of selling.

“Between the two of us, we’ve spent $100 for the whole season, and that’s it. So that’s seven weeks,” Connelly said, of her and her friend.

For those interested in signing up for next year, applications appear on Layton City’s website around the end of April.

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Megan Swann, Co-culture editor

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