Sunday, April 17, 2011

The History of a Farmers' Market


Photo Credit: old-photos.blogspot.com

Think about your local farmers' market. How long has it been there? How many farmers and producers have sold their goods at your market? Are all the products local? I recently started to delve deeper into these questions in my new volunteer role as "Consumer at Large" for my local market, The Parkdale Market.

The Parkdale Market is a public, city-run market that has been in existence for 87 years. It mostly offers fruits and vegetables, but there are also flower vendors, and in the future, other food products might be for sale. Not every vendor provides local food; some are re-sellers. I'm going to go on record in saying that I prefer to shop local, but I still support the Parkdale Market and I look forward to my experience with this volunteer group.

The idea of the group is to assemble a core team of community members, market vendors, business owners and city employees who will "provide a wide-ranging perspective to help address the on-going issues that affect the Parkdale Market and will function as a sounding board as it helps chart the market's future."

After only one meeting, we've already heard about some new and exciting changes that will be taking place this year, and I can't wait for it to warm up outside so we can all experience the market.

It's amazing to me that this same market that is just steps away from my door is the same one that my 92 year-old grandmother used to frequent as a young woman. How powerful it is when food and history unite, and we can share those memories and experiences with our close family and friends. Wow, food truly does connect us all.

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