Athens Review, Athens, Texas

May 16, 2013

Ideas on display

Athens Farmers Market brings produce, imagination together

Rich Flowers
The Athens Review

ATHENS — Charles Parker can do some pretty fancy things with your kitchen utensils and old golf clubs.

Parker’s ideas can be seen on display Saturdays at the Athens Farmers Market. This is his third year to bring his crafts to be sold.

“What I make is what I call Texas crafts,” Parker said. “They’re things with Texas flags on them, and that sort of thing.”

Parker displays a bird house in the colors of the Lone Star State flag, with the roof made from an old license plate. He’s also used an old golf iron to fashion a wind chime, and has made another chime from forks, spoons and kitchen utensils.

“I like the market,” Parker said. “It’s local, and you get to see people from the community and around.”

Parker has been associate pastor of Central Baptist Church for 14 years. He said he started making crafts to sell about 10 years ago.

“I used to go off to festivals that towns have,” Parker said. “Sometimes that would get to be a pretty long Saturday.  Those could be 12 to 14-hour days. I’m too old for that now.”

Parker started by buying items for resale, and added the Texas Crafts to his line. The Athens Farmers Market only allows the sale of produce and hand-made items that come from the area around Athens.

“The guy selling something is always trying something different to see what people are interested in,” Parker said. “I enjoy making the stuff as much as anything else, and if I can make a little money, that’s a bonus, I guess.”

The Farmers Market was a long-standing tradition in Athens. The idea died out, only to be resurrected in 2010.  The market resumed its weekly schedule on May 4.

Shoppers can find locally-grown produce and home-made goods, ranging from crafts, breads, jewelry and other foods. The hours are 8 a.m. to noon, Saturdays.

“They have a lot of interesting folks, and a lot of interesting people involved in it,” Parker said. “I think it’s a good venue for Athens.”