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      New state farmers market opening delayed

      State and local officials break ground on the new state farmers market in Lexington County in August 2008.

      COLUMBIA " The scheduled opening of the new state farmers market under construction in Lexington County has been delayed, state agriculture officials announced Monday.

      The new market on Highway 321 had been slated to open in April to coincide with the Midlands Spring Plant and Flower Festival April 15-18.

      S.C. Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers said the grand opening is now scheduled for June. Weathers said heavy spring rains are to blame for the delay.

      The rain has delayed pouring concrete footings for other buildings," said Weathers. The new market is on target for occupancy by June " the peak season for fresh South Carolina grown produce."

      The 2010 Midlands Plant and Flower Festival will be held in the big watermelon shed at the current market on Bluff Road.

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