Up Coming Events

Celebrating 25 years since the 1st International Public Markets Conference, the 8th International Public Markets Conference will set a new direction for the vital role markets play in transforming local economies and communities. Outstanding speakers from around the country and the world will be on hand to deliver lectures, workshops, and breakout sessions, to share wisdom gained from their years dedicated to the movement, and to encourage participants to creatively respond to the emerging challenges of today and tomorrow.


  • Markets as focal points of local food economies
  • How economically sustainable markets can enhance access to fresh, healthy food in low-income communities
  • Markets and Placemaking: Revitalizing communities and public spaces
  • Bringing people together: Markets as cultural melting pots
  • Building local food systems: Linking wholesale, retail, and local production


  • Friday, September 21: Plenary sessions and workshops; reception in the Ohio City/West Side Market District
  • Saturday, September 22: Tours and special evening event
  • Sunday morning, September 23: Workshops and closing session


The conference will highlight Cleveland’s burgeoning local food scene and its commitment to sustainability. It will also recognize one of Cleveland’s greatest treasures – the West Side Market, which celebrates its centennial in 2012. The West Side Market has played a key role in advancing new and creative businesses in the Ohio City neighborhood, a part of the city that is now known as “Cleveland’s artisan neighborhood.” The market’s history and resilience make Cleveland a perfect place to celebrate the economic and social power of public markets.

The conference hotel will be the Renaissance Cleveland. Located downtown on historic Public Square, the hotel is connected to Tower City Center and the Regional Transit Authority’s Public Square station, which provides a direct rail connection to the Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. A special conference group room rate of $139/night plus tax, subject to availability, is available until September 5, 2012. Click here for reservations, or, if you prefer to reserve by phone, call 1-800-Hotels1 and use the code “pubpuba”.

Market Tours

Conference tours will visit a wide range of markets throughout Cleveland and Northeast Ohio. All tours will include the historic West Side Market.

Project for Public Spaces (PPS), Conference Organizer

PPS is a national nonprofit organization that has worked to revitalize public spaces in communities for more than 30 years. Our public markets program, established in 1987, aims to foster the role of public markets in reconnecting local economies and communities and to support the pivotal role markets play in supporting public health and local food systems.

Ohio City Incorporated & City of Cleveland, Conference Co-Hosts

Ohio City Incorporated is the community development corporation responsible for preserving, developing, and promoting Ohio City, a neighborhood on Cleveland’s Near West Side and home of the West Side Market. Ohio City Incorporated is also partnered with the City of Cleveland to facilitate planning of the West Side Market Centennial.


The conference will bring together more than 300 public market leaders, advocates, and representatives from the United States, Canada, and beyond. A broad mix of market managers, downtown planners, grassroots organizers, local food advocates, transportation experts, health care professionals, and educators from around the world will be participating.

For questions, please contact Dana Kitzes at
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