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BLOG-Live from the Winter Farmers Market

08:20 am – With 40 minutes to go before opening, the baked and dry goods arrive first. The four vendors are setting up their tables and a fifth arrives. Free Spirit Farms is one of the first vendors with a supply of granola and fresh baked bread.

08:25 – Roger Reynolds, market manager, tells three eager customers the market opens at 9am.

08:28 – There is a flurry of unpacking; blankets of all patterns and colors cover the church’s collection of white tables. Country Garden unloads their supply of popcorn and dry goods while the Apron Sisters confer on their assorted breads.

08:35 am – Anderson Farm arrives with a load of meat, and Doug Anderson stocks up his freezer. The greens rustle in.

08:50 am – Roger comes to check the vendors’ state of readiness… He gives a five minute warning. The last vendor Brother Bear arrives and quickly sets up his coffee beans.

08:55 am – The market opens. Twenty people stream in! Most queue up at Patchwork Gardens and Flying Mouse Farms and the race for fresh cut winter greens begins.

09:20 am – The warm weather has encouraged a lot of early arrivals…45 people have come through the doors in the first twenty minutes.

09:25 am – A couple relax after shopping on the markets outside bench and give their dog a special treat…gluten-free liver biscuits from Country Gardens.

09:29 am – I buy Flying Mouse Farm’s last bag of greens—beet greens, of course—and they are out of produce. Boy, their carrots looked good today but, even though they brought a huge basket full, I didn’t act fast enough. Patchwork Gardens is still bagging lots of beautiful greens though so there is sound hope for fresh veggies.

09:40 am – Beth Bridgeman has set up a splendid table of spice mixes for bean dishes and dry rubs for meat dishes. Her table excites a lot of interest including one mother who picked up a couple items for her daughter to take back to college. Seems she needs to spice up that bland dorm food.

09:58 am – The market has been open for a little more than an hour. And it is humming. Lots of people are discussing the various new offerings of the market. Mariano Rios is telling patrons about the history of the pastries he offers: a French apple pastry, Portuguese muffins, an Italian cake, and an Argentinan corn cookie.

10:30 am – Halfway through the market and already 135 visitors have come through the winter market. The sun has come out, and bright light is filling the hall. I turn my back and Patchwork Garden sold out of greens. They are packed up and gone for this week. They came well stocked with several bins and were steadily busy.

10:45 am – I give in and get breakfast. Hmmmm…apple pastry. This treat is getting a buzz, but Mariano Rios is well stocked to meet demand.

11:05 am – I’ve gotten into a few conversations here at market. Some folks got a tour of the United Methodist Church’s food bank which is located adjacent to the market’s space. We also discussed worm farms particularly the project at Wright Patterson Air Force Base where red wrigglers have been used to process classified materials. We wonder what worms might find good to eat in our village.

11:47 am – The market is winding down. I better make my purchases…let’s see eggs and bread and…

12:00 pm – Pastor Sherri Blackwell and I are among the last lingering shoppers. She tested the lotions of the Triangle Apron Sisters and I bought a loaf of their orange cake. The market had 168 visitors today and a bustling day all round.

12:19 pm – It’s all quiet now as the last vendor has cleared out. We’ll turn out the lights soon and meet again next week.

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