I thought long and hard about what to write this week and I have to admit that my brain wandered into some very nice places. I found myself smiling, almost grinning, quite a bit. The reason was mostly the farmers who make up the Bluegrass Farmers' Market. I walk through the market each week and ask each and every farmer if they will be at the next market, what they will be bringing and do they have anything new, so that I can pass it on to our customers in this blog. It's pretty much routine stuff and when you are a 100% homegrown market, the offerings don't really change much because we all live in Kentucky and we all grow basically the same thing...or so I thought! Boy oh boy, was I pleasantly surprised this past Saturday!!!
As I continue to smile while I am typing this, I look back at the various tables loaded with farm fresh goodness and the faces on the folks who grew that stuff. Yes, the faces looked a bit tired...but, heck most had been up before dawn harvesting or else they were picking in the dark the night before...they had every right to be tired! That's what it takes to be a 100% homegrown/produced farmers market...hard work, long hours and the ability to still smile on market day! :)
The next thought that made me smile from ear to ear was the fact that I saw more than the usual corn, tomatoes, green beans, peppers, squash, zucchini, etc. You know what I am talking about...the same old stuff no matter how great it tastes, it gets boring. We all need a change in our diet and I'll be darned if our farmers didn't bring it to the market this Saturday! WOW, greasy beans, edamame, leeks, shallots...to name just a few things. I was just really appreciative of our farmers who went above and beyond to grow something a wee bit different for our small market. I know that you'd expect to find things like this at large city markets...we're a small, young market with farmers who rely on their crops to survive and yet they took chances on something new. I mean, how great is that!!! I hope you understand my grins by now. :)
But, I am not going to stop there because the smiles and the pride in belonging to such a great farmers market gets even better. I'm sure every state holds a state fair. But, if you have never participated in one, you'll never know just how competitive they can be. As a plain old fair visitor, I just walk through the agricultural aisles with my jaw darn near on the floor. I wonder...how the heck did they grow that perfectly straight green bean. Wow, what a perfectly round and red tomato. Geez look at that adorable white pumpkin. And wish I could dip my finger into the golden honey! I know that if you have ever been to a state fair, you know exactly what I am talking about. There are all sorts of ribbons next to the winners...by the way, I consider everyone who makes it to the state fair a winner, but only a few make it to the top! So, I am sticking my chest out for the Bluegrass Farmers' Market and reporting that we had two big winners at the Kentucky State Fair this year!
HONEY DEW APIARY and owner, Keith Green was the Sweepstake winner in the Honey category...he won it all! Congratulations Keith! :)
OVERMAN'S BLUEGRASS FRUITS AND VEGETABLES won the Grand Champion White Halloween Pumpkin award along with many others. Cute/funny story that our farmers enjoyed...Kirby (husband) is the one we see selling at the market. Babette (wife) is the one who stays home and takes care of the farm stuff. To be fair...they both work the farm. When it came time to deliver the entries for the state fair, they arrived with a truck full of great stuff. Kirby took care of his entries and Babette took care of hers. There was still a few pumpkins left and being the gentleman (and hubby) that he is, Kirby let Babette pick first...she choose the winner! We all had a good laugh and chances are, Kirby will be hearing about his “loss” for quite some time.
That's what I mean when I talk about the smiles that the farmers at this market bring to my face. They are real folks, they work hard, they farm, they grow, they raise, they bake, they blend and they are constantly trying something new to make the Bluegrass Farmers' Market a great place to shop.
Thank you farmers and friends for my smiles...it keeps me wanting to be part of such a great community organization.
~*~ 2011 MARKET HOURS ~*~
Richmond Rd. Market
Saturday 9 until 2 or until sold out
Tuesday 3 until 6:30 or sold out
We'll be set up in the beautiful tree lined parking lot of Pedal the Planet and Fast Signs, right next door to the Glenn Auto Mall on Richmond Rd. It's just a hop, skip and a jump outside of Man 'O War Blvd. Parking is right there so you don't have to drive around hunting for a spot to park. The parking lot is also paved and that makes it very stroller and wheelchair friendly!
Mill Pond Shopping Center Market
Saturday 9 until 2 or until sold out
Thursday 3 until 6:30 or sold out
We'll be set up in the shopping center with plenty of free parking. Look for us near the corner of Boston Rd. and Man 'O War Blvd.
The Bluegrass Farmers' Market
is Lexington's largest
100% homegrown/produced farmers market!
And, each farmer is certified...
IT'S TIME TO CAST YOUR VOTE!
Only a few more weeks to vote...we need your help!!!!
We were voted #1 in the state of Kentucky last year thanks to you, our loyal customers! We hope we can do it again in 2011...we need your vote! Just click on the Bluegrass Farmers' Market link and cast your vote...tell your friends and family too!