It took more than a decade to come to fruition, but Mike and Stephanie Downes are now the owners of Good Earth Market in Rehoboth Beach.
Sue Ryan opened Good Earth Market in Ocean View in 2004, as one of the first certified organic farms in Delaware. She opened a second location in Rehoboth in 2013. Ryan sold the Rehoboth business in November to Mike and Stephanie, who is Ryan’s sister.
During a recent interview, Mike said he and Stephanie had discussed with Sue being a part of the business years ago, but Ryan wasn’t ready to open a second location. Then, he said, they moved from Bethany to Baltimore to help take care of his parents.
Years later, after nearly a decade in Rehoboth, Mike said Ryan approached them again, and this time it worked for everyone. The Downeses are still living in the Baltimore area while they wait for their son to graduate high school. Mike said the plan is to make a permanent move after graduation.
As children, both Stephanie and Mike came to the Delmarva seashore. Mike’s family has owned a house on Dickinson Street in Dewey for nearly 100 years. The couple lived in Bethany for a decade in the early 2000s when they started their family.
“We’ve got a lot of history in the area,” he said.
Mike said there aren’t many changes planned at the market in the immediate future, but they will be offering grab-n-go sandwiches, coffee and baked goods.
“We’re going to see how things go for a year before we make any decisions,” said Mike, who was in the store the day of the interview because Stephanie was back in Baltimore with their son.
The two stores may be under different ownership, but since it’s still in the family, there will be cross-promotional events. The first such event will take place Saturday, April 17, in observance of Earth Day, which officially takes place April 22. The event will feature the rollout of Good Earth Day IPA at both locations and will also serve as a grand reopening and open house at the Rehoboth location. The new IPA is a collaboration between Good Earth Ocean View and Tall Tales Brewing Company in Parsonsburg, Md.
The event will have tastings, door prizes and other fun activities at the Ocean View store and restaurant from 11 a.m. to close. In addition to the new IPA, other attractions that day for the Rehoboth location include a CBD 101 class with Tim Fields from Baywater Farms at 10 a.m.; samples of products from the store; and meet/greet with Jackie Guidera from BelieveBig.org, a nonprofit bridging the gap between conventional and complementary medicine for the treatment of cancer. A free gift will be provided with each purchase.
Good Earth Market, 38131 Terrace Road, is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday to Saturday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday. For more information, call 302-226-3276 or email email@example.com.