Albert H. Fulcher | Editor
Former home to the San Diego Padres, Lane Field Park was inspired by San Diego’s love for baseball. But now, on Sundays, this park is transformed into an artisanal wonderland of food, crafts, the arts and music. The market debuted in mid-September, Lane Field Park Markets founder and manager Andrew Sisley wanted to bring a different vibe other than normal farmer’s market, making it a venue rather than just a place to buy produce.
Settled by the San Diego Bay next to the InterContinental San Diego in Downtown, this venue offers beautiful scenery, as well as creative foods, drinks, artists and musicians. This was Sisley’s goal, to go against the come and go pedestrian traffic and create a common space for them to find and spend a morning, afternoon or a day.
“The concept was to bring community to this space Downtown and it is a really nice environment to come and hang out and enjoy some food, music and really enjoy a gathering space,” Sisley said. “We have about 25 food vendors with a nice variety and diverse selection of food.We’ve created a browse environment, so we bring in about 100 umbrellas and picnic blankets and lay it all out, so it is really a nice sanctuary whether it be tourist from the nearby hotels or people that might live in that area and[Sisley is] working on bringing a broader scope of people from the San Diego area.”
Lane Field Park Markets is a little bit different than the traditional farmer’s market scene, which technically is designed for people to go purchase their produce. This is a space designed for people to visit and spend quite a bit of time, buying food from local vendors and browsing through a range of arts and crafts.
“It is more an artisanal food market, with wood-fired pizzas and burgers, but we also provide a wide selection of culturally diverse food,” Sisley said. “It is more than a market, it is a venue for people to come down and enjoy the day. It is very family- friendly and quite different than anything else that is around in San Diego.”
In terms of music, Sisley wants to expose lots of artists. Each weekend is different and there is live music from folk, indie, reggae and jazz musicians.
The chefs are artists on their own as well as some of the craft vendors, and the painters that are there painting live,” he continued. “But also in the music scene, we didn’t want a large stage with loud booming music, we just wanted a great singer with a guitar singing under a tree for a few hours. That is the type of environment that we have created. The music compliments the atmosphere, but it gives that live element and close contact with singers, guitarists and various other musicians. We are building up a portfolio as we go and want to expose these artists, create something different each week.
Sisley said that the market is growing organically week by week. Recently, it has added outdoor games and the market represents some of San Diego’s established restaurants, retailers and vendors as well as bringing in up and coming vendors, helping to launch the careers on new local talents.
—Albert Fulcher can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org.