Let me first preface this blog post with a brief description of the downtown Appleton farmers market. While it isn’t as large as the Madison Square market, it has a lot to offer the Fox Valley. There are more than 140 vendors selling fresh fruits & vegetables, exotic meats & cheeses, breads & baked goods, specialty food & handcrafted items along with live music. You can find pretty much anything you need produce wise and there are a surprising (yet encouraging) number of vendors providing organic, grass fed meat of all types. There are also tons of vendors who in addition to their market food, have stations for selling beautiful and unique bouquets of seasonal flowers. Living in a small college town in Missouri for the past four years didn’t really allow for this type of experience. Sure, we had a market but it was pretty pathetic and mostly hit or miss.
I relish in the fact that I can get up Saturday morning and head to the market, which is blocked off for all traffic. It feels good to shop locally and support farmers who work hard to provide organic food, not to mention I enjoy knowing that what I’m eating isn’t modified or somehow packed full of chemicals and preservatives. I like to see the dirt on my lettuce and the roots on my carrots. It also hits a soft spot in my heart reserved for the memories of my childhood home and the vegetable garden at the end of the woods that my grandparents created to provide for our family. I can remember many times weeding around the broccoli trying to get more weeds than my sister to impress my grandmother. I also remember my grandpa looking so heroic on his Ford tractor, working the earth so we could follow behind him dropping seeds. That history will always be a part of me, so I’m delighted to re-live it as my eyes dart from stand to stand–searching for the goodies that will fill my fridge and belly.
I wanted to share with you some images I’ve taken of my hauls from the farmers market this season. If you are a reader who lives in the Appleton area or even the Fox Valley you should stop by the market this Saturday to see for yourself! Open 9am-12:30pm! Or you can always check out their Facebook page Enjoy!