Meet Troy Bowers- our new FM Manager
It's been six weeks since the Lodi Certified Farmers Market started and we would like to take a minute to introduce you to the new Farmers Market Manager- Troy Bowers. Troy was hired early in 2020, and had big shoes to fill as our previous manager Samantha Schwager worked diligently to provide the best Downtown experience. We found Troy fitting right in with the team, working well with vendors, and gearing up for a very successful Downtown Lodi market. Then, the whole world shifted. COVID-19 changed the way events and gatherings not only nationwide, but worldwide. Travel bans, mandatory quarantines, the essential vs. non-essential designation- all came into play when we decided to alter the traditional Farmers Market. As many of you know, we are bound by guidelines to maintain our "essential" status, as well as work on a new location, layout, and rules for vendors. Troy took this hurricane in stride and after a few weeks of all-hands-on-deck, the Chamber opened on May 14 with the first Essential Lodi Certified Farmers Market in our temporary location (267 N. Mills Ave). Thank you for rolling with the punches, Troy. We're lucky to have you. Learn a little about Troy in his interview below:
Before you started at the Lodi Chamber, where did you work?
I had the distinct privilege to serve as the CEO of the #1 small county fair in California- the Amador County Fair.
How long have you been in the industry?
I have been in the fair industry for 50 years upon my retirement in November. I have worked for the San Joaquin County Fair for 12 years and have served most of the county fairs in California and Arizona throughout my career. It is a true community of people and I have been honored to have such a sustainable career.
What brought you to the Lodi Chamber & the Lodi Farmers Market?
Serendipity, really. My wife and I stopped by about a few months ago to speak with Karen Alvarez about the upcoming Greece trip. We all started talking about all the facets of the Lodi Chamber of Commerce and she mentioned the Lodi Farmers Market and asked if I knew somebody, and it didn’t take me long to say “yea, I do know somebody.”
What are you most excited about this Farmers Market season?
I just love the community surrounding agriculture and farmers and I am a fan of Lodi. I want to serve the community and Chamber in every capacity I can.
How does having the Lodi Certified Farmers Market benefit consumers?
So this Farmers Market is huge- having locally grown, certified produce to be available to the local community is a wonderful benefit. You get quality produce in a friendly environment, and you get the opportunity to meet the farmers who grow the produce you consume.
What sets the Lodi Certified Farmers Market apart from other events?
When I think of agriculture and the best produce, Lodi is the place! It is the center of San Joaquin Valley and having access to that quality produce in such an iconic, and historic, venue such as Downtown Lodi really showcases the sense of community. While we had to make some necessary changes to keep the Lodi Market in compliance, hopefully we will be back in Downtown Lodi before people know it.
Outside of work, what are some of your hobbies?
I enjoy making beer. Depending on the season, I homebrew in my spare time and am currently working on a blonde ale. I also am an avid backyard tomato farmer. My wife and I love traveling to national parks, different countries, and have a very large family and enjoy those get togethers.
What is the one thing you’re hoping to add to the Farmers Market?
I am hoping to find an organic corn vendor- that is one thing I found “missing” from last year’s rosters. And who doesn’t love corn on the cob? It goes hand-in-hand with summer and BBQs and Farmers Markets.