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Omaha's historic Florence Mill will reopen in June after pandemic and renovations
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Omaha's historic Florence Mill will reopen in June after pandemic and renovations

The downtown Omaha Farmers Market returned for the season with fewer restrictions because of the pandemic.

A missing piece of country charm in Omaha is back: After a year’s hiatus, the Florence Mill, along with its farmers market and museum, reopens in June.

The farmers market, held on Sundays, is perhaps one of the most idyllic in Omaha, capitalizing on the historic and rustic nature of the mill and the country setting of the surrounding field. The mill was built in 1846 by Mormons for their winter quarters, and its timbers are among the only visible remnants of their stay in Omaha.

Linda Meigs, the mill’s director and market manager, said the farmers market will again include the features that she says give visitors a slow-paced, county fair-type experience: farm animals, live music, artisans, baked goods and locally grown fresh produce. Returning this year will be the smoked-on-site barbecue of Lawrence Gatewood’s Down Home TLC Food truck.

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Linda Meigs

The farmers market’s first sale day will be June 6. The Winter Quarters Mill Museum opens June 2.

Meigs rotates in different farm animals for the Sunday market so that city kids can get a sense of the country. The first Sunday will feature alpacas, and the next will feature calves.

In October, the mill will be southern anchor for the popular Omaha North Hills Pottery Tour.

COVID-19 and the need for outdoor improvements prompted the yearlong closure, Meigs said. New this year are a courtyard and flush toilets.

Meigs rescued the historic structure from demolition in 1998 when a World-Herald article about its likely demise inspired her to buy it.

It was later featured in The World-Herald’s “Omaha ABCs” children’s book, with the Florence Mill illustrating the letter “F.”

The mill is operated as a nonprofit.


Omaha World-Herald: Afternoon Update

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Nancy Gaarder helps cover public safety and weather events as an editor on The World-Herald's breaking news desk. Follow her on Twitter @gaarder. Email: nancy.gaarder@owh.com

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