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Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market changes hours due to summer heat

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The Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market is cutting back on it’s hours because of public safety concerns from rising temperatures.

But not everyone is happy about the change in schedule.

For six months, vendors at Plaza de Las Cruces will have to close up shop an hour early.

The Las Cruces Farmers Market board of directors said it’s too hot to keep the market open until 1p.m.

In a unanimous decision by the farmers market board of directors, every Wednesday and Saturday, more than 200 vendors will now have to close by 12p.m.

Russ Smith, a food vendor for the Happy Dog food truck said the hour change he’s already seeing a drop in sales.

"I know in my numbers, I'm losing about 33% of my business throughout the week, just in that one hour of lost opportunities to serve,” Smith said.

Karin Bradshaw, secretary for the board of directors of the Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market says the decision was made as a safety concern to the public.

She said that this past Saturday, two customers fell victim to heat exhaustion.

"Because of the heat we have been having both customers and vendors becoming overheated. A couple people wound up in the hospital-- heat stroke that type of thing,” Bradshaw said.

"The market is a real draw. It's a destination. And as a destination, it deserves to be there to serve and perform as a lunch moment as well. I think it's gonna have big ramifications for the market if we don't perform,” Smith said.

The board has decided to keep the new summer hours for six months out of the year.

But some people living in Las Cruces think that's too long.

"I think if they're gonna try it, give it a shorter period, maybe just June and July,” Candace Rios said.

Some people could withstand the sun some others can't so I would say the directors honesty should leave it up to the vendors should they choose to continue out,” said Jesse Lopez, another Las Cruces resident.

Winter hours will be every Wednesday and Saturday from the beginning of October through March, from 8am to 1p.m.

Summer hours will be every Wednesday and Saturday from the beginning of April through the end of September, 8am to 12pm.

Bradshaw said the board of directors would be willing to talk to vendors about possibly cutting down an hour for the hotter months of the year, instead of the full six months.

The evening market will keep the same hours 5p.m.-9p.m. every Wednesday evening.

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