Interview by: Jamilah Grizzle
July 15, 2017
Ed Phillips has lived in Oberlin for almost a decade and is a regular at the Oberlin Farmers Market.
"The whole vibe here is good."
Q: What positive impacts do you see the farmers market having on your life and the community?
A: In the immediate sense, this is how I make my living, baking for the farmers market. It provides the community with a fine quality product that is organic, vegan and handmade. I get to interact a lot with people in the community. Its how i met a lot of the people here in town. In regards to the college, I’ve met lots of people who work for the college and/ or are students of the college at this farmer’s market. Another thing is that I am involved with both the summer and the winter market and I hire the musicians for the market. I get a lot of students from the conservatory or just students from the college who were totally good musicians. I’ve made a lot of friends over the years. I’ve been doing that for probably 5 years or so.
Q: What role do you play in making positive change in your community?
A: As far as impacting the community, I think that with my involvement in the Board of Directors for the farmers market, we put this on and it brings people together. It’s kind of a social event, where a lot of people come and talk to each other and chat and also provide local food for the community, organic food. I think we provide things that wouldn't be obtained in Oberlin otherwise. And music! Even if they aren’t from the college, it just makes people happy. It brings people together, it’s a nice gathering.
Q: What type of culture does the farmer’s market seek to cultivate within the community it supports?
A: I think it brings people together. It gets people to get to know one another from various aspects of the community where they may know one another or meet without this market. People come here and you see people hanging out, talking to one another. I know many people that are in various parts of that would stay in their own circles. I wouldn’t get to know them and they wouldn’t know each other without this market.
"I think it’s one of the nicest places to live in Ohio, quite frankly."
Q: What do you love about the Oberlin community?
A: I love the people here. I love the diversity of the kinds of people here. I have great friends here. I love the music here. Music is all over here. Its really nice. You could leave your doors unlocked and feel safe. It’s very safe and people are very friendly here. I love all the restaurants. The whole vibe here is good. I think it’s one of the nicest places to live in Ohio, quite frankly.