Farmington Farmers Market Celebrates “National Farmers Market Week” and Much More!
By Walt Gajewski
August 6th is the start of National Farmers Market Week! The timing here in Michigan works out perfectly, because if I had to choose one word to describe August in Michigan, it would be “abundance!” Michigan fields will soon be producing on an almost daily basis, including everyone’s favorite, Michigan sweet corn! Let’s also be grateful for field tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, cucumbers, carrots, summer squash, green beans, beets, garlic, onions, kale, cauliflower, blackberries, blueberries, peaches and much more! Did you know that Michigan ranks second only to California in agricultural diversity? Yup. We boast over 54,000 working farms, altogether cultivating some 10 million acres of farmland. Kinda’ makes you want to buy your produce fresh off the farmer’s truck, doesn’t it?
Here’s a tip if you’re coming to the Farmington Farmers Market for ‘fresh off the farm’ produce — take some time to look around before you buy, and ask the farmer where his farm is located! Our farmers come from as far west as Coloma (south of Holland) in Michigan’s fruit belt. From the east, farmer Tou Xiong drives an hour and a half from Emmett, (North of Imlay City) to bring his produce to market. The distance between just these two farms is 217 miles! The soils, temperatures, rainfall and overall growing conditions are very different. This difference is evident in the variety and flavor of fruits and vegetables that are available at the Farmington Farmers Market. Remember the old saying, “It’s amazing what you can see by just looking.”
You will also notice on your next visit to downtown Farmington that there is a new specialty grocer set to open – “The Fresh Thyme Farmers Market”, a 28,000 square foot store located literally steps away from our weekly Saturday market. Together, we have formed a partnership that seeks to make Saturdays “market day” in downtown Farmington. Fresh Thyme is this year’s presenting sponsor of our city’s weekly Saturday outdoor farmers market, and is eager to win your trust with their service, price and quality. I have been personally working with the store’s incoming team and they are the nicest people – having contributed to the market’s annual health awareness fair and to our local servicemen at our recent annual 4th of July celebration. The store’s grand opening is set for August 17 (Wednesday), and in addition to a wide array of nationally grown produce there is also meat, seafood, dairy, bulk oils, nuts, grains and more!
Come make downtown Farmington part of your Saturday life experience. Here in our quaint community you can shop local stores, stroll the market, dine al fresco…. we like to call it, “Saturday life in a Michigan small town.” Speaking of small towns, please mark your calendars for Saturday, August 13. This is the date of our 10th Annual Farmers Market Corn Roast, hosted by the Farmington Elks. Each year for this event, our farmers donate corn to the Elks who in turn will shuck, charcoal roast, season and serve some of this savory Michigan seasonal treat. The event will get underway with live music at 10am. All proceeds go to charity.
Here’s wishing all of you a delightful rest of your summer. It has been busy, I know, but make time for beautiful Michigan sunsets, a sit on the front porch, an evening stroll through your neighborhood and a visit to downtown Farmington on Saturday mornings. We’ll have the coffee on!
The Farmington Farmers Market is free and open to the public, located at the corner of Grand River and Grove Street in downtown Farmington, every Saturday 9am- 2pm, through November 5. For more information about the market please visit: www.farmingtonfarmersmarket.com