The weather could not have been more perfect for the opening day of Fairwood Farmers Market last week. In fact, it rained the next day, so the timing could not have been better.
When I drove by the market at 319 W. Hastings Road near Mead High School shortly after it opened, there was a long line to enter, and the line was just as long when I returned to walk and photograph the market about 90 minutes later.
The line was partly due to the interest of farmers market season beginning in the area and the new social distancing rules that affect every part of our lives. I was happy to see the long line, and it moved quickly.
Talking with farmers and vendors inside the market, the vibe was unanimous in being appreciative to begin work again, to be in the outdoors again, to be able to talk with people again and to peddle their wares again – all at 6 feet apart, and all vendors wearing face masks and gloves.
Opening day vendors included Commellini Estate, Deb’s Bath Bombs, Ace Hardware, Big Barn Brewing Co., the Bread Box (OMG the pies looked uh-MAH-zing), Highland Honey Farm, Front Porch Farm, Mama Torrez Salsa, the Scone Ranger (I love this name), Twilight Cider Works, Well Grown Farms, the Dragonfly Cafe, Renegade Farm and others.
Vince Peak, owner of Share Farm, attended the opening day of Fairwood Farmers Market with his family, including his energetic 2-year-old son, North. “It’s really great to see everyone out here in this beautiful weather supporting local farmers markets and vendors,” Peak said. “I hope more of this will be happening soon. Farmers markets are essential to the health of a community – we rely on our local farms for sustenance, resources and relationships.”
Share Farm is one of a small group of local organizations who had been awarded $1.4 million from the USDA to prepare boxes of produce and other food to deliver as part of Farmers to Families Food Box.
“The USDA grant provides the community a unique opportunity to access produce from local farmers markets sellers who have been challenged by the current economy,” Peak said. “Share Farm is able to buy in surplus all of a vendor’s products, which then are provided to families in need.”
Peak said Share Farm has partnered with Spokane Food Fighters to deliver about 400 of the 20-pound local food boxes each week until December.
I love this community of ours, I love how people are stepping up, I love farmers markets, and I hope to frequent as many farmers markets this season as possible – all while running into friends old and new and enjoying the beautiful outdoor weather.
Emerson-Garfield Farmers Market: 2310 N. Monroe St., 3-7 p.m. Fridays starting June 5. (509) 255-3072; market.emersongarfield.org.
Fairwood Farmers Market: 319 W. Hastings Road, 3-7 p.m. Tuesdays, through Oct. 14. fairwoodfarmersmarket.org.
Farmers Market at Sandpoint: 231 N. Third Ave., Sandpoint, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays. (208) 597-3355; sandpointfarmersmarket.com.
Hillyard Farmers Market: 5102 N. Market St. in Spokane, 3-7 p.m. Mondays starting June 8. facebook.com/hillyardfarmersmarket.
Kendall Yards Night Market: 1335 W. Summit Parkway, 5-9 p.m. Wednesdays. (509) 321-5888; kendallnightmarket.org.
Kootenai County Farmers Market: Southeast corner of U.S. Highway 95 and Prairie Avenue, Hayden, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Saturdays through October. (208) 773-3202; kootenaifarmersmarkets.org.
Liberty Lake Farmers Market: 1421 N. Meadowwood, Liberty Lake, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays starting June 6. libertylakefarmersmarket.com.
Millwood Farmers Market: 9103 E. Frederick Ave., Millwood, 3-7 p.m. Wednesdays starting May 27. (509) 924-2350; farmersmarket.millwoodnow.org.
Newport Farmers Market: 236 S. Union Ave., Newport, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays through October. (509) 590-6005; facebook.com/newportorfarmersmarket.
Northeast Washington Farmers Market: Main and Astor, Colville, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays through October. (253) 203-8920; newfarmersmarket.org.
Spokane Farmers Market: 20 W. Fifth Ave., 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays, through October. (509) 995-0182; spokanefarmersmarket.org.
Spokane Valley Farmers Market: 2426 N. Discovery Place, Spokane Valley, 5-8 p.m. Fridays starting June 5. (208) 619-9916; spokanevalleyfarmersmarket.org.
Send us your farmers market listing for 2020: The Food section at The Spokesman-Review invites regional farmers markets – new and established – to share their schedules for a seasonal calendar listing. Send operating hours, opening and closing dates, websites, phone numbers and addresses to Features editor Don Chareunsy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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