What Is a Public Market? | Episode 259

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Public markets are one of the foundational institutions of urban life. The Project for Public Spaces defines public markets as indoor or outdoor markets that “operate in public space, serve locally owned and operated businesses, and have public goals.” They not only a place of commerce, or a tourist attraction, but a place for convening and community building that cuts across social, cultural, and economic strata. In many American cities, such spaces can be hard to find, which is why we cherish the truly great public markets that have survived. In this virtual program, we will survey some of our favorite public markets that we’ve had the chance to visit, what makes them great, and what are their “public goals,” from Los Angeles to Cleveland, Philadelphia to Flint, and even here in New York City.

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Thanksgiving Shopping at the Essex Street Market

In preparation for Thanksgiving, we’ve put together a shopping guide so you can find unique, delicious, and affordable items right in the Lower East Side’s Essex Street Market. But when it comes to market shopping guides, we have big shoes to fill.

Starting in 1934, WNYC began hosting a daily five-minute segment at 8:25 a.m., Monday through Friday, targeted at housewives on topics related to food shopping, recipes, and healthy eating. Narrated and hosted by Frances Foley Gannon, Deputy Commissioner of the Consumers Service Division of the Department of Markets, the segment was heard by over 100,000 listeners daily. In preparation for the show, her team of researchers visited wholesale markets at 6 a.m. each morning to investigate and report on fair consumer pricing for the fresh ingredients of the day.>> Continue reading