Open thread: Summer Food Festivals and Favorite Farmer’s Markets

I love summer and I really enjoy eating. Thankfully I find a way to combine both and get out of the house. What are your favorite summer food festivals? Which farmer’s markets are the best?

(My answer is the first comment)

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31 Responses to Open thread: Summer Food Festivals and Favorite Farmer’s Markets

  1. Mrs. Q June 5, 2010 at 1:02 pm #

    Once a summer we venture north to the Madison Wisconsin farmer's market: I've never been to a better farmer's market in my life.

  2. Carol June 5, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    In Cleveland, Ohio, we have the West Side Market, the origins of which dates back to 1840. Not only does the market offer fresh fruits and vegetables, but butcher stands, ethnic food stands, and international shops.

  3. Laurie June 5, 2010 at 1:22 pm #

    When I lived in New Orleans, the market on River Road in Uptown was great. Not only fresh local produce, but also delicious snacks made with the same stuff! What a combo! Eat, shop and enjoy. Now I am in Honduras, where trucks with produce are everywhere with fresh stuff from the farms nearby. But I do know who has better and cleaner items, as well as who is cheaper when cheaper is the only thing I can afford for the kiddos in my project.

  4. Emma and Sean June 5, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    my boyfriend reminisces about the cleveland market when we visit the one here in phoenix. it's small but they've got great produce, eggs, meat, etc. they recently opened up a storefront and cafe as well, so you can buy locally on days other than wednesday afternoon or saturday morning….

    i love summer time at the market – so much delicious produce! we missed the annual peach festival, but the schnepf u-pick farm is still open so we are heading there this morning after market. eating a peach while it's still on the tree is awesome!

  5. Jenn A June 5, 2010 at 2:04 pm #

    I live in Tacoma, WA, where we're blessed with not 1 but FOUR farmers markets!

    They're located in different parts of town and run on different days of the week. The one in my neck of the woods hasn't opened yet but the Thursday market near my office has been open for 3 weeks.

    I bought some pea vines this week as an experiment and had them with sauteed garlic & fresh salmon last night. I'll be blogging about it soon. 🙂

  6. Michelle June 5, 2010 at 2:08 pm #

    The Gilroy Garlic Festival in Gilroy, California!! The festival is run by volunteers and all proceeds go to the organizations the volunteers are working for (school sports, youth groups, etc…)! You could come! :o)

  7. Anonymous June 5, 2010 at 2:47 pm #

    I live in Oklahoma, and when summer comes around we have farmer's markets everywhere! The fresh eggs, milk, fruits and vegetables are so delicious. We also have a small town called Rush Springs, and every summer they have a watermelon festival. There's watermelon (of course) but it's more like a carnival. I haven't been in years, but last time I was there they had face painting, and sand art and live music and dancing. It's a really fun event!

  8. Andrea June 5, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

    We live in the Chicago area and the market in Woodstock, IL is fantastic! In addition to produce, they also have locally grown organic meat and eggs as well as freshly baked breads, jams, jellies and cheese. Everything there is locally grown and the vendors cannot bring things that they do not produce themselves. The market is on Saturdays from 8AM-1PM and also on Tuesdays from 8AM-1PM. Mrs. Q, if you live in Illinois you should definitely come out to Woodstock to check it out! FABULOUS! Crystal Lake's farmers market opened today and I was there since I live in Crystal Lake. A very good market also, but not as good as Woodstock. Just a bit closer for me.

  9. NJS June 5, 2010 at 4:12 pm #

    I second the Madison farmer's market.

  10. Anonymous June 5, 2010 at 5:12 pm #

    Soulard's farmers market in St. Louis, MO!

  11. Anonymous June 5, 2010 at 7:47 pm #

    I live in Madison! I was just at the farmers market this morning, got some great Green Zebra tomatoes and spicy cheese bread 🙂 It's definitely the best one I've ever been to, apparently it's the largest producer-only market in the country.

  12. Ann June 5, 2010 at 7:59 pm #

    St. Stephen's farmers market in Richmond, VA -love it!

  13. Tara June 5, 2010 at 9:33 pm #

    I'm lucky enough to be in Madison. Love the Dane county Farmer's market! I try to go every Saturday I can:)

  14. Anonymous June 5, 2010 at 10:47 pm #

    Boulder, Colorado has an amazing farmer's market on Saturdays during the summer. My favorite booth is the fresh local mushrooms, but there's also a variety of fresh produce as well as prepared foods.

  15. ashley schoolar June 5, 2010 at 11:02 pm #

    Phoenix area farmers markets are great, they have been mentioned already in this thread. BUT, the most awesome farmers market that I've ever seen/been to in my life was the one in Portland, Oregon. It was bordering on obsessive. Piles and piles of beautiful, wild mushrooms from forests only minutes or hours away. Incredible stuff. The crowds were overwhelming but it was well worth it. Sad thing is, I was only visiting Portland and couldn't take anything perishable back with me.

  16. COB June 6, 2010 at 2:30 am #

    Our Inwood Farmer's Market in Northern
    Manhattan is great, very comprehensive list of things you can buy. But I am not sure anything beats the Union Square Green Market. Dozens of stalls, 4 days a week, and they have a food stamp program. Not to mention, they filmed a Sesame Street there!!

  17. Melissa E. June 6, 2010 at 3:00 am #

    My husband and I take my son to a different farmer's market each week all summer long. Our favorites so far (We are in the Chicago suburbs.) have been the Lisle French Market, Oswego's Country Market, and the Naperville Farmer's Market. My son, Nick, loves the samples. I love the fresh produce, especially spinach and peaches and cherries.

  18. Recovering Human June 6, 2010 at 5:00 am #

    I heart Union Square Green Market -NYC!
    I love it because it's a mix of street artists, produce stalls, flower/plant stands, dairy stalls, bakeries, cheese booths and farm fresh meat products. Plus they have amazing programs such as cooking demos which allow schools to integrate nutrition education into the curriculum.

  19. Anonymous June 6, 2010 at 5:36 am #

    Davis, CA has the most amazing farmer's market. It was voted America's favorite farmers' market last year. It's year-round, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. There is a variety of fruits, vegetables, cheeses, breads, meat, fabulous Indian and Mexican food, arts and crafts. It's a great place to see the diversity of the city in the people who gather there (from hungover college students to families), but also in the food.

  20. Judy in Indiana June 6, 2010 at 3:58 pm #

    My church has a frmer's market in the parking lot on Thursday nights.It's a larger downtown church so we get soppers on their way home from work and we cater to the local neighborhood, which does not have a nearby supermarket. Local people can get good stuff at eat at decent prices and we even have vendors who accept WIC vouchers. We really provide a service to the area while having fun and meeting friends each week.

  21. jordan kettley June 6, 2010 at 4:26 pm #

    Burlington, VT has a great Farmers' Market. It fills up City Hall Park every Saturday from May to October, then moves inside once a month for the Winter. Burlington has a very strong local foods movement, and the connection between the farmers and the city is simply wonderful.

  22. Noey June 6, 2010 at 5:21 pm #

    My favorite farmer's markets are the ones that are just local farmers set up along side the road. I've never once had a bad experience and I've come away with some of the tastiest tomatoes, corn, strawberries, watermelon, cantaloupe, peas, apples and various other produce every time. And at prices that are far more reasonable than any grocery store.

    We don't really have a summer food festival where I am, but that's okay. Being well stocked in fresh, yummy produce all summer long more than makes up for that.

  23. Lily Ruth's Mama June 6, 2010 at 8:00 pm #

    I live in San Antonio. Our best farmer's market is new – just celebrated it's 1st birthday! – and is WONDERFUL! My baby daughter and I go every Saturday 🙂 it's located on the banks of the SA river, so the setting is lovely as well!

  24. k.emily June 6, 2010 at 8:55 pm #

    the farmers market at the ferry building in san francisco is my favorite!

    last summer i went to a lavender festival in sequim, washington. i visited a few different lavender farms and there were lots of lavender foods. i had lavender ice cream…it was delicious!

  25. Mary Zawadzki June 6, 2010 at 10:22 pm #

    I live in NYC and I have to agree with Recovering Human — Union Square Market in NYC is fantastic! It's really a mix of a really large farmer's market filled to the brim with organics, home made breads, cheese, wine, etc. and all sorts of local artists doing their thing. As a native NYC gal, this just screams the village.

  26. Rafael86 June 7, 2010 at 1:27 am #

    I love hot dogs and all junk food but in summer i preffer salads like lettuce, tomato, celery etc.

  27. Anonymous June 7, 2010 at 2:18 am #

    In the Chicago 'burbs the Saturday morning farmer's market in Oak Park is great. Used to live within walking distance and it was fantastic. My new suburb has it's farmer's market on Wednesday mornings, so my work schedule makes it hard to ever get there.

  28. Karen G June 7, 2010 at 2:26 am #

    I live in Seattle, WA and we have a LOT of farmers' markets. Pikes Market is definitely a favorite for the year-round and daily nature of it plus the people watching, crafts, etc… All of the local markets are good though; each has their own vibe. Yum! We have a small one that just started last summer and is walking distance from our home.

  29. Jessica June 7, 2010 at 2:56 am #

    I love the Woodstock farmers market in woodstock IL! Organic veggies here I come!! 🙂

  30. MJS June 8, 2010 at 4:46 pm #

    I'm not a big fan of food festivals because in here in the midwest that seems to mean deep fried (insert random food item here) on a stick. The smell of the grease hanging in the air is usually enough to make me feel ill.

    Our local farmer's market has undergone a bit of a shake up this year. Local growers were tired of sellers driving up to the big food market in Chicago, buying fruits & veggies from Mexico and CA and then coming back to town to sell out of season items at the weekly farmer's market. The growers have started their own market with rules about items having to be locally grown. It's only been open a couple weeks & I haven't gotten out there yet to check it out but I have high hopes.

    We belong to a CSA – Community Supported Agriculture – group so that's where we get most of our veggies. Ours has a half dozen growers across several counties. Every week from mid-May thru mid-Oct we meet one of the growers at a local drop site to pick up our produce for the week. It's like a mini-festival every week!

  31. Alicia June 8, 2010 at 7:00 pm #

    I go to the Lakeside Farmer's Market in Richmond, VA. This year has been so exciting, they built a structure for the vendors, with electric!!

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