Farmers Market in full swingPublished 1:51pm Friday, July 20, 2012
Despite record stretches of drought, the Farmers Market hosted by MainStreet Alexander City is drawing large crowds each Saturday.
“It’s been great,” said Richard Wagoner, MainStreet executive director. “Every vendor has been thrilled with the turnout. Even on the Saturday that it rained, it never slowed down.”
Wagoner said he thinks people continue to return to the market because of its hyper-local focus.
“They’ve got good products, and people like knowing who they’re dealing with,” Wagoner said. “We have a lot of new stuff and extra stuff, and people are excited to get a hold of it.”
A few of the featured products at the market include fresh cut flowers, goat cheese in a variety of flavors, lotions and balms made from bee by-products, homemade vanilla and peach ice cream, natural soaps, herb plants, pepper jelly and other jams and jellies, salsa and relishes, bird houses and other wood products, watermelons, corn, peas, and baked goods including the market’s ever-popular fried pies.
“People love those fried pies,” Wagoner said. “They’re very light – not greasy – and the crust is so flaky. People buy dozens of them and bring them home.”
Wagoner said the natural soaps have been another favorite of Farmers Market customers.
“I didn’t realize how many people are allergic to store-bought soaps because of the ingredients in them,” Wagoner said. “We’re seeing a truer market evolve (with these products), and that’s what we’ve hoped for.”
Wagoner said Price Nursery will also make an appearance at this Saturday’s market, offering large ferns for a discounted price.
The market, located every Saturday in the parking lot downtown across from Carlisle Drug, lasts from 7 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.
“We don’t make any money off this. We don’t charge the farmers or anything,” Wagoner said. “We’re one of the only markets that doesn’t charge. We provide the tents and tables – we put them up and take them down for the farmers. Really, we can’t have this market without them.”