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Latest from The Spokesman-Review

Farmers Market Mulls Dog Ban

The issue of whether dogs should sit and stay out of the Moscow Farmers Market and arguments about the First Amendment got mixed reviews from an advisory board on Monday. No decisions were made. The Farmers Market Advisory Board held a special meeting following a decision last week during a Moscow Administrative Committee meeting where the board's input was sought regarding prohibiting dogs at the market. City attorney Rand Fife also proposed an amendment to market policy that would require organizations to apply for space in Friendship Square. Though not included in this year's policies revised by the board, the issue of removing dogs from the market was brought by Councilor Wayne Krauss, said Fife, because of comments he received from the public regarding safety concerns/Brandon Macz, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here. (Bart Rayniak SR file photo of a golden retriever in 2010 Coeur d'Alene 4th of July parade)

Question: Do you get miffed when you see owners with dogs at a public event?

Tomato beauty contest tomorrow

The South Perry Farmers Market is hosting the 2nd annual tomato beauty pageant and kids decoration exposition on Thursday, Aug. 25,
Tomatoes may be submited in three categories:
Prettiest tomato
Ugliest tomato
Best tasting tomato
Entires are welcome from vendors, neighbors, kids and other tomato enthusiasts.
Prizes will be awarded.
The  winner of each category will also have their name and tomato variety etched in the 'Robeson Cup' (a big soup-pot named after the variety of tomato which won the very first 'Best Taste' Prize, last year in 2010). The cup will be maintained for posterity and continue to be used for future Pageants.
There will be nice big red tomatoes and lots of decoration materials for kids and those young at heart to dress up as part of the Decoration Exposition.
Submissions are welcome from 2:30 pm to 4:50 pm at the market. Judging begins promptly at 5 pm.

Ten things to enjoy at the South Perry Farmers Market…


- people and dog watching.

- homemade, handmade bread.

- new potatoes

- radishes in several colors.

- beets.

- eggs from real hens living real lives.

- greens of many kinds.

- ice tea or coffee.

- raspberries.

- and meeting your neighbors.

And don't forget there's live music in Grant Park tonight.
(Yes, the blog is in a list building kind'a mood)

An expanding market

The South Perry Farmers Market has an over-flow problem of the good kind: vendors are spreading into the parking lot at Grant Elementary School. There strawberries, asparagus, sugar peas, cabbage and many other fresh veggies at the market today. It's open until 7 p.m.

Lots of tomato plants - for free

The South Perry Blog stopped by the developing Grant Park Community Garden this morning, and things are looking great. There are still a few available beds left - stop by the South Perry Farmers Market on Thursday from 3-6 p.m. and sign up for a bed.

If you don't know what to plant, the Vinegar Flats Community Garden has a BOAT LOAD of tomato starts that need to be planted very soon, or they'll end up in the compost pile. E-mail Kathleen at grantparkgarden@gmail.com if you'd like some.


First outdoor Perry Market of the season

And there really are asparagus here.
The South Perry Farmers Market couldn't have asked for better weather for opening day - it's gorgeous.
For self-growers, stop by and get a Grant Park Community Garden plot - for the rest of you, come by for fresh produce, bread, eggs, honey, seedlings and crafts. Market is open until 7 p.m.

Art and asparagus

The South Perry Farmers Market will be outdoors today for the first time this season. Its in The Shop's parking lot and open from 3-7 p.m. There were fresh asparagus last week… just throwing that out there.
Today is garden day at the market - come in and get your questions answered about tomatoes and anything else you are growing in your yard.
Grant Park Community Garden
still has plots for sale - you can purchase those at the farmers market as well.
Don't forget about the work party on Saturday morning. Starting at 9 a.m. that's when volunteers put together the frames for the raised beds. Brind basic hand tools and strong arms.
And it's Third Thursday, which means there are art shows at South Perry businesses. Local photographer Dean Davis is showing at South Perry Pizza.

Finally - here's a link to today's story about the proposed alcohol impact zone around the South Perry District.

Today’s highlights

Teacher Bob McCaslin and his CV Kindergarten Center class show the hats they can wear during school recess, provided to them by doctors and staff from Advanced Dermatology, who came to the school May 3 to teach skin and sun safety. SR photo/J. Bart Rayniak

There's a whole bunch going on in today's Valley Voice, so sit back and get your mouse clicking finger warmed up. While many school districts are trying to deal with expected budget cuts, the Central Valley School District has announced it does not plan to lay any teachers off this year and will instead not replace people who are leaving the district. Reporter Lisa Leinberger has that story.

I have a report from this week's Spokane Valley City Council meeting, where council members selected a new planning commissioner and interviewed two council candidates. The Liberty Lake Police Department is reporting an increased crime rate for 2010, but the rate is still the lowest in Spokane County based on population. The Department is also moving forward on replacing two officers who recently resigned.

If you are looking for something to do this weekend Lisa has information on the annual Heritage Fair hosted by the Spokane Valley Heritage Museum. The Liberty Lake Farmers Market and the Millwood Farmers Market are also setting up their tents for the season.

Grant Garden go-ahead

The nice folks behind the Grant Park Community Garden got the green light (pun intended) on the garden design from the Parks Department. They will start selling plots today at the South Perry Farmers Market (from 3-6 p.m.) and they begin cutting sod on May 14. Stop by the booth at the Farmers Market today for more information.
Also, visit your South Perry Blog at The Shop today from 3-5 p.m.

PM: Farmers Market Sets Season 25

"Spring must be nearing," writes David Lee/KXLY, "as the Kootenai County Farmers’ Market is officially opening for their 25th season this Saturday in Hayden." Read more here.  (KXLY photo)

Question: Why do you visit the Kootenai County Farmers Market?

Hold the phones -

"The good news is there is no need to contact Sen Brown today, as the Ways & Means committee has decided to restore funding in their proposed budget! They have taken the recommendation we discussed last year, which is a huge victory. This budget proposal will now need to be reconciled with the one proposed by the House of Representatives (in which funding for the program is cut) - so there may still be the need for phone calls in the next week or so."

Via e-mail from Brian Estes this morning

South Perry represented in Olympia

Brian Estes is headed to Olympia to testify before the State Ways and Means Committee, in an effort to preserve funding for WIC's farmers market's program. Womens Infants and Childrens program was one of the first programs that made it possible for low-income mothers to access healthy, local food at farmers markets, Estes said. WIC is facing budget cuts as the state attempts to balance its budget. Estes is the chair of the South Perry Farmers Market. He's getting a solid endorsement from SPBNA and encouraging neighbors to call Senator Lisa Brown's office at (360) 786-7604 in support of the WIC Farmers Market Nutrition Program.

On a side note, Hi-Co Market is carrying more and more fresh produce and considering becoming part of the Health District's "Healthy Corner Store" program.

Eat with your eyes, tonight

Eat With Your Eyes is a series of farm tours, films and book chats designed to stimulate conversation about food and agriculture, that's good for everyone and the planet. The series begins with a pot luck and book chat tonight at the South Perry Farmers Market (915 S. Perry Street) from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Brian Estes, MaryAnn Delaney and Jennifer Hall are leading a conversation about the book,  The Town that Food Saved, by Ben Hewitt. There will also be an update on the farmers market. Free.

Pizza brings spring

The South Perry Farmers Market is open on Thursday, March 24, from 3-6 p.m. and the blog heard somewhere that Veraci Pizza will be there baking heavenly pies in Woody's parking lot. These would be the pizza people with the outdoor woodfired oven… yum. 
The easiest way to keep up with the market is by joining its Facebook page here.

Several blog readers have asked about the art walk last Thursday, how to join and how to exhibit and all that. The blog is not doing the booking - sorry guys - it's the nice people at South Perry Pizza who got the Third Thursday Art Walk off the ground. Find them on Facebook here. The individual venues book their own artists and plan their own event, so if you want to show your art you can also just stop in.

Out of the cold…

The South Perry Farmers Market opened again today inside the gym just north of the Spokane Buddhist Temple at 923 S. Perry. It will be there every Thursday from 3-6 p.m. through December, after working out a special events permit with the city of Spokane. Brian Estes, market director, was quietly optimistic that this could turn into a permanent indoor location.
“This is a great location and a great old building.” said Estes. “We just hope people find us again - it happened kind of last minute, but here we are and we are open again.”

The farmers market is open again

The South Perry Farmers Market found a home in the Buddihist Temple gym, 927 S. Perry Street and it’s open tomorrow, Thursday Dec. 2 from 3-6 p.m. This is directly across the street from The Shop’s parking lot - best of all - it’s indoors and it’s permanent. Stay tuned to the South Perry Blog for updates!

Farmers Market so close

I follow the South Perry Farmers Market on Facebook here and just saw a post saying the market is “so close” to a permanent indoor home. When the market makes that announcement it will be the first permanent indoor farmers market in this town, for as long as I’ve been writing about farmers markets here (since 1998). True, there have been temporary indoor locations - there was one on Ruby Street, there was one in the building where KHQ-TV is now located and there were some indoor facilities at the site owned by WSU off Division. Can’t wait to hear the news.

Market back at The Shop

The South Perry Farmers’ Market is back out in the cold - here’s a bit from this morning’s story:
“Things didn’t go quite as planned last week, when the South Perry Farmers’ Market was supposed to move indoors for the winter at the Emmanuel Family Life Center on South Richard Allen Court.
Market director Brian Estes said everyone was set up and ready to open, when the fire marshal showed up and told them to leave the building.
“There was a problem with the permits in the building, there was no sprinkler system,” said Estes, who moved the market outdoors. “We could still be on the property, but we couldn’t be inside the building.” Read the rest of the story here.

The South Perry Blog will be at the Farmers Market today from 3-6 p.m. - stop in and tell the blog what the market means to you.

The blog is at the Farmers Market tomorrow

The South Perry Blog will be hanging out at the Farmers Market in The Shop parking lot from 3-5 p.m. tomorrow.

Stop in and tell me about your fall events. Any cool Halloween parties coming up? Lots of folks have their Halloween decorations out - do you have a favorite home with lots of pumpkins and scary stuff? Send me an address and I’ll stop by and take a picture. See you all tomorrow.

The market is bustling

And the sun is out, you can’t really ask for more. I spotted apples, pears and squash on the way to my perch here at The Shop - and there are lots of people here. The kids are already going at it at the pumpkin decoration booth; don’t miss one of this year’s last outdoor market days. The market is open today through 7 p.m. by when, I hate to point out, it will be close to dark.

Farmers market moves indoors

There was a lot of new developments to celebrate at the South Perry Business and Neighborhood Association’s meeting last night - one major development being the South Perry Farmers market moving indoors at the Emmanuel Life Center at the end of this month. The Farmers Market celebrates Harvest Festival tomorrow from 3 to 7 p.m. in its usual location at The Shop - the last outdoor market day is on Oct. 28.
Brian Estes, who runs the South Perry Farmers Market, said the market has outgrown The Shop’s parking lot by leaps and bounds.
“We are wrapping up our fifth season and it’s been our best season so far, so thank you for that,” Estes told the neighbors and business owners at the meeting, adding that in the three years he has been involved with the market vendor sales have increased by 400 percent.
“We finish at The Shop on the last Thursday of October and immediately on the first Thursday of November we will be in here right where you sit,” Estes said. Among many other plans for next year, the market would like to pursue is the construction of a community garden in Grant Park.
“I would love to see the neighborhood come up with a plan for what a community garden in Grant Park would look like,” said Estes.

Read the rest of the story in tomorrow’s South Voice section.

Creative tomato kids

There were about two dozen entries in the tomato beauty pageant - and - well - everyone who entered was a winner. Chef Chris Deitz, the South Perry Blog and two community volunteers judged three other categories: size (the smallest one won) - ugliness (it was pretty ugly) and taste (a classic, dark, striped sun warm specimen won). But it was the kids who stole the show.

Farmers market cooking demonstrations

Chef Chris Deitz of South Perry Pizza is taking his cooking across the street and doing live demonstrations at the Farmers’ Market tonight. As part of the tomato festival Deitz is preparing several tomato-centered recipes, including a salsa fresca with peppers and cilantro, and ‘South Perry Panzanella.

The market runs through 8 p.m. today so it’s not too late to come by for some dinner inspiration.

And the winner is:

It’s not too late to enter your special tomato in the tomato beauty pageant at the South Perry Farmers’ Market - judging begins at 5:30 - everyone is welcome and encouraged.

And the market is full even though it’s barely been open for half an hour. Spotted lots of tomatoes (duh!) and many different varieties of potatoes and cucumbers.

Tomato festival at market tomorrow

The South Perry Farmers Market will host its first Thursday Market Tomato Festival at the Shop tomorrow - and stay open for one more hour, so from 3-8 p.m. The event will feature tomato-focused cooking demonstrations and recipes by South Perry Pizza chef Chris Deitz, a tomato beauty pageant contest open to all, and activities for kids.

Chef Deitz of the neighborhood pizzeria will provide a series of demonstrations throughout the market day for easy home-preparation recipes celebrating the beginning of the tomato season in the Inland Northwest. Recipes, which will include a tomato sauce as well as a bruccetta plate, will focus on ways to preserve tomatoes, giving the community tools to eat local tomatoes year-round.

The tomato contest, open to all entries free of cost, will award prizes to tomatoes judged in four separate categories: best flavor, prettiest, biggest and ugliest tomatoes. Participants are welcome to place multiple entries. The contest will be judged by a team of tomato experts, including a farmer and several community members. The weekly kids booth at the Market Info Table will feature Mr. Tomato Head tomato decorating activities.

Via e-mail this morning from the South Perry Farmers’ Market

Goat - the other lean meat?

Jane Keolker owns Quail Ridge Ranch and she’s at the South Perry Farmers’ Market together with her friend Hannah Kirk, of Harvey Creek Goats. The two both bring baked goods - Keolker a variety of gluten free breads and cookies, and Kirk brings pies, cookies and pastries. And they both bring goat meat. Yes, goat meat.

“It’s leaner than skinless chicken breast and I just wish more people would give it a shot,” saidd Keolker. “I make kebobs from it, I marinate it and as long as you cook it slowly you are fine.” The meat comes from a South African goat breed, the Boer. “It’s like a very lean red meat,” said Keolker. “It’s easy to use it instead of hamburger in breakfast sausage and chili.” If you pick some up, the friends will make sure you also get a handful of recipes to get you started. You can also find the two at the Liberty Lake Farmers Market on Saturdays.

Arabesque Farms and Bakery

Today the blog is visiting with some of the vendors at the Farmers’ Market and the first one on the list is Arabesque Farms and Bakery. Why? Because the bread is amazing.

Louise Tuffin explains that she took a “fun class” at the San Francisco Baking Institute and kind of got hooked. “So I came back and took a one week class and then we forged ahead with two bags of flour and a church kitchen,” Tuffin explains, in between handing loaves of cinnamon bread over the counter. Her bread and pastries are made with all organic ingredients using a prefermented dough and a natural starter. “We get some of the bubbles and that ‘tang’ but it’s not as sour as sourdough, we think it’s pretty good,” Tuffin said, laughing. She makes 75 loaves of bread per outing - and 150 for Saturdays. Find her at South Perry Farmers’ Market, at the Millwood Farmers’ Market on Wednesdays from 3-7 p.m. and at the downtown Farmers Market on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

And the market is open

It took about 10 minutes for the parking lot in front of The Shop (924 S. Perry Street) to fill up with vendors and shoppers, after the market opened at 3 p.m. The blog is spotting lots of fresh vegetables today, new potatoes, beans and peas. The market is open until 7 p.m.

The South Perry Farmers’ Market is today

The Blog Dog would like to remind you that the South Perry Farmers’ Market is open today, Thursday, from 3-7 p.m. Don’t miss this opportunity to stock up on locally grown and produced food, crafts and other goods. This Thursday’s market was a wet one, but there were still plenty of shoppers and vendors. Carrots were spotted, as were onions and radishes. Lots of lettuce and other greens - hoping for new potatoes soon.

And the market is open

From my perch here at The Shop I can see everything you’d need to make a wonderful dinner tonight: many different kinds of bread and baked goods, honey, organic beef, jams and jellies, here’s even pottery so you could pick up plates to serve your food on.

The market is open until 7 p.m.