Buying local is a great way to support local small business. And with the opening of the annual Downtown Westminster Farmers Market this weekend, buying local has never been more convenient – and delicious!
The market, located on the Conaway parking lot on Route 27 by Emerald Hill Lane, will now be open on Tuesday afternoons from 3 to 6pm and Saturday mornings from 8am to noon. With the market now offered twice a week, there are now twice as many opportunities to buy fresh produce, baked goods, meats and flowers. This Saturday, there will also be live music provided by Strings on Wings.
The market’s offerings are split between “primary products”, such as eggs, meats flowers, fruits and vegetables, and “value added”, including baked goods, jams and jellies. The market is “producer only,” which requires all products to be grown by the farm, or handmade by the person hosting each booth. Shopping at the downtown market provides you with juicy, just-picked produce that was grown a few miles away, not shipped from some unknown, faraway location. Many vendors also offer organic and natural products. In addition, you can actually
speak to the farmer himself, who can tell you a bit about his farm, growing
methods and his way of life right here in Carroll County.
If you’re a newbie to Farmers’ Markets, here are some good tips to get shopping:
1. Go early for the best selection. The early bird gets the worm, and the early shopper gets the best tomato!
2. Think about your menus for the week before going to the market. Everything looks great on the farmers’ tables, and it is easy to become overwhelmed with the choices. Make a list of what you need and then go find it.
3. Take sustainability one step further and bring your own reusable cloth bag to bring home your goodies. You may also wish to bring a cooler to keep your food finds fresh until you get home.
4. Take a lap around the booths first before buying. The offerings change every week, which is one of the best things about the market. In addition, some farmers sell similar items, and it’s always good to take in the offerings before making a purchase. Grab a cup of coffee from Furnace Hills, enjoy some people watching and then take the time to make your selections.
5. Try something new! There may be items that you are not familiar with, but don’t be afraid to ask the farmer what it is, or how to prepare it. You just might find a new family favorite!
The Farmers’ Market will host the following producers:
Meats: Evermore Farm (pasture raised beef, lamb and pork), Sattva Place (certified organic beef, pork, chicken and eggs)
Fruits and Vegetables: De La Tierra Gardens, Lehigh View Farm, Nev-R-Done (certified organic), Orchard Country Produce & Bakery, Thorne Farm, Tomatoes, Etc.
Sweets: The Farmer’s Daughter, Jeannie Bird Baking Company (signature butterhorns), Rare Opportunity Farm, Sharon’s Baked Goods
Coffee: Furnace Hills Coffee Company (Organically grown, direct trade coffee roasted locally)
Dairy: Hawks Mill Creamery (raw milk cheddar cheese)
Gifts: Not From China Gourds (gifts from gourds)
Meats: Evermore Farm
Fruits and Vegetables: Nev-R-Dun, Tuckey’s Mountain Produce
Sweets: The Farmer’s Daughter
Coffee: Furnace Hills Coffee Company
For more information about the Farmers’ Market, visit www.downtownwestminstermarkets.com. We’ll see you shopping for produce around Downtown!
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