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Kids Farmers Market changing lives by teaching life skills

A Farmers Market basically ran by kids in Tracy is not just selling food, but helping teach life lessons.

A Farmers Market basically ran by kids in Tracy is not just selling food, but helping teach life lessons.

Jazmine Guitron, 13, is cashing in as a sociable sales person selling produce to the public.

"I don't get nervous anymore that much and I can talk to basically everyone now," said Guitron.

The seventh-grader at North Elementary School in Tracy is one of a half-dozen young entrepreneurs learning the art of the sale.

"Oh, what I like about this is when you get a happy customer," said 13-year-old Yonao Villa.

"Really it's just having the fun to get a taste of how it is in the future if you are ever going to do a business," said 14-year-old Manuel Paredes.

What's up for sale at the market are fresh onions, radishes, lettuce and more. Karen Koski is with the Boys & Girls Club which oversees the kids pop-up stand.

"They love handling the money and using the cash register," said Koski. "But through the curriculum they're going to learn about all of that. How to use the cash register. The math aspects of that. How to calculate the pricing."

"Oh in the beginning, a lot of kids were like I love eating chips, of love doing this. But once they started trying this and started learning about it. They were like oh my god it's so much better than this," said aBoys & Girls Club mentor Cinthya Vazquez.

The produce is provided by the non-profit Puentes of Stockton through a grant from the San Joaquin County Office of Education.

Puentes runs the Boggs Tract Community Farm near the Port of Stockton and all kinds of seasonal fruits and vegetables are grown and harvested on the 3.5 acre lot.

"We have all those leafy greens. Chard, cauliflower, broccoli. This is a purple kale. Lots of spinach, salad mix," said Jessica Bryant, Healthy Retail Coordinator at Puentes.

Several schools in San Joaquin County host their own kids farmers markets.

The young sales people at North Elementary are part of the school's running club, and the money the students make goes towards entrance fees to races and field trips.

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