One thing that I had a really hard time with when we lived in Boston was how hard it was for me to get to a local farmer’s market. I never found one in my neighborhood, and I didn’t always have much time to visit the one that I knew of downtown. I did find one huge weekly market that offered more than just fruits and vegetables. The SoWa market, held in one of my favorite Boston neighborhoods, had everything from duck eggs to antique books. It was an art/vintage/farmer’s market, and it was by far one of my favorite places to visit on a Sunday afternoon. I could have happily spent every sunny Sunday in the South End, stocking up on fresh produce, browsing through beautiful artwork, rummaging through vintage clothing, and dining at my favorite food trucks. Oh those food trucks…
As much as I loved the SoWa Market and all of my visits there, it wasn’t the most practical market for me to shop at. Many of the products were overpriced, and it really wasn’t the most convenient of places for me to get to. Public transportation wasn’t always the quickest choice, and parking was always a bit of a hassle. I loved this market dearly, but visits were more of a treat than a regular occurrence.
Fayetteville only has one farmer’s market. It meets in two locations each week, and lucky for me, one of those locations just happens to be about 4 blocks from my apartment. I visited this market often before we moved, but never really much for shopping. I might have picked up an heirloom tomato or a bucket of peaches here and there, but my visits were always really more for fun than anything else. It was always one of my favorite places to sip a cup of tea, chat with a friend, and enjoy a morning of people watching.
While I still enjoy visiting with friends and sipping tea, nowadays, I find the farmer’s market to be a whole new kind of wonderful. Each time I visit, I am intrigued by what new arrivals the changing seasons will bring. I enjoy chatting with the local farmers, and the little old ladies who sell their crafts. I love meeting new people and learning about their line of raw milk or cold pressed juices. I can’t wait to pick out a bundle of fresh flowers or to stock up on funky new vegetables that I’ve never cooked before. Last week I picked up some purple bell peppers and a ripe batch of green tomatoes. I ate my pepper dipped in homemade hummus, and tried my hand at pickling with a green tomato relish. A recipe that I had hoped to share, but one that’s better saved for a later date.
I try to visit every Saturday that I can, and am really beginning to enjoy this weekly tradition of mine. It’ll get cold soon, and the market will have to close. Once that happens, I will make due with the local grocer and be thankful for our organic co-op. I’ll look forward to spring, and for what offerings the new season will bring.