Warm weather brings customers to outdoor market in Roland

BoBrook Farms hosted an outdoor market called “Spring Fling,” and had live music and over 30 vendors!

ROLAND, Ark. — With winter in the rearview mirror, Arkansans are focused on warmer temperatures ahead. 

“The weather is just amazing right now,” Karen Bradford, owner of BoBrook Farms in Roland said. “Of course, you never really know what the weather’s going to do until the day of.”

It’s a good thing Mother Nature cooperated on Saturday. Bradford’s farm hosted an outdoor market called “Spring Fling,” and had live music and over 30 vendors.

“Most of our vendors, this is homemade stuff,” Bradford said. “This is stuff that they’ve been cooped up making. And so they have a lot of variety of things to sell.”

Kenzie Couron is one of those vendors and sells hand painted signs and home décor.

“Hand cut, hand painted,” she said. “Anything to make people’s lives a little bit fancier.”

Today’s weather is perfect for her. Couron hasn’t been able to sell anything in person since the pandemic started, and Saturday was her first time seeing customers face-to-face again.

“I was nervous because you never know how weather’s going to be in Arkansas, especially in March,” Couron said. “It’s like everybody’s attitude changes when the weather changes, and they’re ready to have some color in their life again.”

With the warming temperatures comes signs of the season. Amy Williams and her two kids were at BoBrook Farms to see a special guest.

“We’re here to see the Easter Bunny today!” Williams said. “I don’t think we got to see the Easter Bunny last year, so this was a great way to do it.”

COVID-19 hasn’t left anything unchanged since the pandemic started. Rather than being next to the Easter Bunny, kids visiting at BoBrook stand in the bed of an old pickup truck, with the Easter Bunny in the drivers seat – all to stay socially distant.

It’s an idea Bradford first used during an event in December.

“We had Santa in the truck, so kids could still get their picture made with Santa, but still socially distance,” Bradford said.

Doing these little things is different than normal, but doing it this way is easier than doing nothing at all.

“You get to actually talk to the people who are taking their artwork home, and you’re decorating for them,” Couron said.

Because even with the precautions, any way to have a sense of normalcy.

“We’re just real fortunate to have this beautiful spring day,” Bradford said.