Westminster Farmers' Market

  (Westminster, Massachusetts)
Bringing you local food, friends and fun.
[ Member listing ]

One Weekly Local Meal This Month

Westminster Farmers' Market and your own kitchen
 
 

Make a commitment to your health and to our local economy by preparing one local meal each week. Shop our local farmers' markets, farms, grocery stores and your own garden to procure ingredients to prepare a delicious, healthy, LOCAL meal for your family. Invite a friend for dinner and top it off with a local beer from Wachusett Brewery or Nashoba Winery (I bet Westminster Pharmacy can get what we need). Sign in here for this event ending on the first day of summer, June 20th. Record your menu here to help inspire us all!

 
 

Westminster Farmers' Market Report for 05-11-12

              Local Food Has Arrived at the Westminster Farmers’ Market

 

 

 

Warmer days have arrived and the rhubarb and asparagus is overflowing at gardens and farms everywhere in the Wachusett Region -- and the Westminster Farmers’ Market has plenty of it to offer. 

 

Rhubarb is now abundant at the market and offers the first taste of spring for anyone that wants to take an extra 15 minutes to prepare a tasty recipe!  Providing a good source of calcium, Vitamin K and Vitamin C, potassium and manganese, rhubarb is a local plant that offers numerous health benefits.  It is flavorful and tart and useful in many recipes including rhubarb crisp (add a bit of ginger for extra flavor and health benefits) and makes a lovely sauce for pork when cooked with onions and herbs!  Rhubarb juice is easy to make (about as easy as making tea without a tea bag!) and is a delicious alternative to soft drinks.  If you wish to try your hand at home canning, rhubarb is an easy vegetable for a first attempt, whether you select a simple sauce recipe or put aside some juice for a hot summer day!  So take an extra 15 minutes this week to prepare a local favorite for your family.

 

Events scheduled for Friday at the Market:

            3:00 Buttonbox Shadow Puppet Theatre

            3:30 Gayle Craig

            5:30 Blacksmith Demonstration

 

In addition to rhubarb, the Westminster Farmers Market now offers seasonal favorite vegetables and herbs including asparagus, carrots, radish, specialty greens (lettuce mixes, spinach, chard, cress, dandelion greens, and kale) and herbs (spring garlic, chives and cilantro).

 

Regional gourmet specialty foods including locally raised grass-fed beef, pastured pork, farm-fresh eggs, award-winning goat and cow cheeses, a wide variety of artisan breads, jams and jellies, spice mixes, delicious desserts and pastries, pies and cookies.

 

In your tour through the market, you can also find potted plants, raspberry bushes, seedlings, perennials, shrubs and treats for your dog along with gift and craft items including beautiful cutting boards, hand-painted mailboxes, bird houses, jewelry and household items.

 

Come meet your local food producers and purchase the highest quality award winning foods available anywhere.  You can drive to your not-so-local farm fresh superstore and read a poster about your farm raised foods, or you can enjoy the short ride to Academy Hill in Westminster and find out about our local specialties by asking the people that produce them!

 

The market will run from 3:00 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. on Fridays.

 

For more information visit www.WestminsterFarmersMarket.com

 

 

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If you would like more information on this topic, or to schedule an interview with the Agricultural Commission or the Market Manager, please email at Hertel@MapleHeightsFarm.com

  [Read More]
 
 

Take Our Survey Please

    I have some survey questions up at "Survey Monkey". I am trying to gather information to make The Westminster Farmers' Market an even greater experience for you.

  If you are a customer at our market, please take a minute to answer our survey (only six questions). You don't have to register to take it, just click here.

  If I get enough responses I can report the results at the Westminster Agricultural Commission Meeting Wednesday night (07-14-10).

                                                                 Thank You,

                                                                 Dean Johnson

 
 

Westminster Farmers' Market Report for 07-09-2010

Westminster Farmers’ Market Report from Maple Heights Farm

More Ketchup Trials Give Me Better BBQ Sauce and Simple Catalina Dressing

 

Vegetables, Goat Cheese, Cheddars and Goudas, Beef, Pork, Artisan Breads (including Gluten-Free), free-range eggs, herbs, crafts and everything you could hope to find at a farmers’ market.  We are in full swing and the market is as busy as it ever gets.  Stop by for an iced coffee and a donut as you wander through the booths.  Talk to our local farmers about their production methods.  Watch the children run and play and blow bubbles (or bring your own to do the same).  Take in a puppet show or a blacksmithing demonstration.  I don’t think there is a better, or less expensive way to entertain yourself on a Friday afternoon!

 

Entertainment this week at Westminster Farmers' Market…
Entertainment by Gayle Craig who is a singer/songwriter from Ashburnham. She is also a member a Westboro based band called Fine by Friday! We also welcome the musical talent of Kevin Jones!

Stop by for another delightful puppet show at 6:00 from Button Box Theatre!

And don't forget to visit Robert Phillips for another informative blacksmithing demonstration.

 

  [Read More]
 
 

Save a Goat Ride Your Senator (with letters e-mails and phone calls)

  The time to support local food against federal government sprawl is now. If we don't take action, they will legislate local food right off your plate. 

 Please read this excellent blog piece, by Pat Stewart, one of our grower/venders. :

Hello,


This is a scary time for those of us who value locally raised food, raising livestock and promoting sustainable agriculture. While the National Animal Identification
System is being retooled, its successor
has yet to be seen. But while we wait
for that word, and while groups and individuals work with the developers to
craft this new program, a larger specter looms on the horizon.

   Here is the rest of it.

 
 

Westminster Farmers' Market Report for 03-12-10

Westminster Farmers’ Market Report from Maple Heights Farm

Take up your Forks! You Can Now Begin Eating Seasonally in the Wachusett Region!

Seasonal Maple Syrup: Your Vote Counts! Vote for Local!

Our maple syrup producers are in full production! Look around you: taps are set everywhere, blue tubing running from tree to tree, metal pails hanging on the sides of trees; on my street alone (West Princeton) we have three syrup operations! Driving a bit further on Worcester Road, I see another! Forget those robins; this is really our first sign of spring! So vote local by committing to our own Wachusett Region Maple Syrup! Visit www.WachusettLocal.com where I will attempt to keep an updated list of local food producers. There, you will find the Maple producers that I know about in this area.

  [Read More]
 
 

Westminster Farmers' Market Report for 01-01-10

Westminster Farmers’ Market Report from Maple Heights Farm

Time to Start Planning your 2010 Vegetable Garden…

Mass Local Food is still taking orders and will be until January 4th.  Take a look at all the new products  which include yogurt, locally grown whole grains, Smith’s Country Cheese, organic fair trade coffee, and a wide variety of meats. 

I’m sorry Mr. G...

Time for a change: January 1st is here and you may want to consider resolving to support our local economy in any way you can.  This is something I will be doing more of as the year progresses and I was reminded of WHY it is so important last week.  I needed some balloon animal type of balloons this week because our daughter only got about 150 for Christmas and due to a little boredom and a lot of creativity, they were used up in short order.  I felt a little sad because I knew that I could have gone to Mr. G’s party center and purchased high quality, fresh (yes, they must not be old) balloons for our balloon twisting attempts.  But..  I helped put them out of business a few years ago.  They moved to a slightly less convenient location, and then iParty moved in a quarter of a mile closer to the highway making iParty slightly more convenient.  I don’t have a lot of party needs but sometimes I needed special items: cheap magic tricks for favors for a magic party, the occasional junky specialty items, great food coloring to make a John Deere tractor birthday cake, and really good, fresh balloons.  A few times I went to iParty instead.  Now Mr. G’s is no more!  I miss the store.  I liked it better than iParty.  The employees could always help me find what I needed and they were always very helpful.  And they were local.  I could have been spending my money to benefit our local economy (granted a very small amount of money, but some nonetheless).  For the upcoming year, I will scrutinize my purchases a bit more and seek out items from local merchants, first in town and then in our region.  And I will try to do my part to help keep our local businesses viable.

Time to start a few seeds…

Seed catalogs are filling my mailbox and I am trying to control my plans for the upcoming year.  This is hard for me to do because I everything looks so easy in January – in May and June, I find that this is not entirely the case.  Anyways, I have ordered plenty of new seeds to add to my existing collection from last year.  As soon as they arrive (hopefully next week), I will be starting globe artichokes and geraniums.  I start many of my own seeds in a cool room, supplemented by two florescent grow lights (four long bulbs).  I use wood ash to head off damping off, and I use a small amount of kelp and eggshells for fertilizer.  This year I plan to do more and may hang two more lights beneath the existing table.  I’ll put these on chains that I can raise as the plants grow.  That will double my seed starting space.  I have never tried artichokes or geraniums before.  I’m trying the artichokes because I like to try something new every year (last year – okra) and geraniums because I like them and want about 20 for my porch and garden and I *think* I can grow them.  I’m waiting for my seeds to arrive and I see that my credit card has been charged so I hope they are on the way!  I have discovered overall that Fedco is a great place to shop for seeds.  I was able to purchase much more than I could from any other place for my budget of $40.  They did not have EVERYTHING that I wanted, but their seeds are cheap enough that I can even try starting some wave petunias (something else I have never grown).  Many of their seed packets are less than half the price of the more commonly known seed houses.  Falstaff Brussels Sprouts range from $2.75 to $3.75 per packet at the popular seed houses, but at Fedco, $1.10.  These kinds of prices allow me to start several varieties of certain vegetables and save the remaining seeds for next year.

Gardening Books:   I just ordered from the library…

·        The well-tended perennial garden

·        Gaia’s garden: a guide to home-scale permaculture

·        Garden Way’s joy of gardening

·        The garden primer

·        Monticello

·        Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello

·        Meet Thomas Jefferson

·        Thomas Jefferson’s Garden Book

Two of the Jefferson Books are children’s books, one a picture book and one from a children’s biography series (which I find to be very interesting, informative, and fun to read).  One is a coffee-table type picture book. 

In addition to these, I was given the new edition of “The Square Foot Gardener” for Christmas.  This is an excellent book and should be read by everyone, especially those of you that think growing a few vegetables is too much work!  In addition to “The Square Foot Gardener”, Bob Thomson’s “The New Victory Garden” is a must read!  I read it every year and then again month by month through the gardening season!  I’ll keep you up to date on any other “must read” books that I come across!

I’m wondering if you can provide some information to me…

Vegetable gardening:

What are you planning for a vegetable garden this year?

Are you interested in information on vegetable gardening in your backyard?  Perhaps demonstrations and/or presentations?

What kind of information do you need about vegetable gardening? 

Farmers’ Market:

Have you ever wondered about selling food items at the farmers’ market?  It really is fun and we try to make it as easy as possible (we have wonderful support from our Board of Health, Board of Selectmen, and our farmers’ market).  We (the Agricultural Commission) will be holding several “seminars” over the winter for vendors.  Do you have any areas of interest?  We will be discussing “collecting sales tax”, “board of health issues” and other such things.  Is there anything else you are interested in learning?

Do you have any great gardening books that you can recommend to me?

Maple Heights Farm:

At Maple Heights Farm, we are well stocked with meat.  Our products are available either through Mass Local Food or by pre-ordering by email.  You can see our complete inventory on our website.

We still have some calendars available that will get you started on vegetable gardening in 2010!  Email for more information or to order…

Kerrie Hertel   

mapleHeightsFarm@verizon.net

www.mapleheightsfarm.com   [Read More]
 
 

Westminster Farmers' Market Report for 10-30-09

Westminster Farmers’ Market Report from Maple Heights Farm

 

Farm Fresh Food for the Holidays and Beyond!

 

This week is the last regular season farmers’ market for 2009, but don’t worry, I have the answer to your fresh food needs for the Holiday season and beyond!  Our market is looking for an indoor location for a pre-Thanksgiving (November 20th) and a pre-Christmas (December 11th)  market.  And Mass Local Food will be open all year, providing delivery once per month (next delivery November 6th – check the website for the soon-to-be-determined Westminster delivery Location – or Berlin or Sterling for that matter).

 

Massachusetts Local Food…

 

Orders are closing for Massachusetts Local Food on Monday so don’t forget to place your order.  Membership fees are refundable through the end of this year if you decide this program is not for you, so you can try it risk free!  All products are locally produced and offered directly from the producer – just like at the farmers’ market.  We are adding more eggs this month and we hope to have pastured veal and organic yogurt online soon.  Go online and read about each producer and consider your food needs for the winter.  Orders close on Monday and Delivery day is Friday November 6th -- after our farmers market has closed for the season.

 

What’s in the market

 

Even this late in the season there is plenty of food available in the market.  If you have spent the past six months eating one (at least) local meal a week, this is your last Westminster Farmers’ Market local meal in a while.  If you haven’t taken the challenge of one local meal a week, might I propose one local meal a season?  And it is not too late for that.  Of course there are still   [Read More]
 
 

Westminster Farmer/s Market Report for 08-21-09

Westminster Farmers’ Market Report from Maple Heights Farm

This Friday we are celebrating the 1 year anniversary of the opening of the Farmers’ Market with a Birthday Celebration!  We are lucky enough to have some Irish Step Dancers performing at 5:00 and Sue Nickerson and her husband Steve will be on fiddle and guitar!  Stop by for a piece of Birthday Cake and enjoy the festivities!

We now have 71 votes for Favorite Farmers’ Market on Local Harvest.  I think that is pretty impressive so far.  We are about 50 votes away from getting onto the top 100 list.  Now, if you have been to our farmers’ market, I think you will agree it is top notch and deserves your vote.  Just the top 100 is all I’m asking.  So please vote at www.localHarvest.org.  It takes me between 2 and 4 hours to write this report each week (admittedly not my specialty).  It will take you about 2 minutes to vote.  Please vote!

 Did you see the Sentinel and Enterprise on Sunday!  We had a wonderful article written about our market – taking up almost the entire front page

  [Read More]
 
 
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