Tag Archives: farmers markets

A Celebration of Local Food: Downtown Farmers’ Market

27 Oct
 by Deanne

Before I left Southwest Minnesota, many people told me about the weekly celebration of local food that occurs in downtown Des Moines every Saturday morning from May until October. Photo of crowd at DSM Downtown Farmers Market

I have been able to visit the market three times since we have arrived in September. This last Saturday was the final day for the market this year.   Photo of lovely colors at DSM Farmers Market

It was a brisk, yet bright and breezy day to take in the sounds (local entertainment), sights (bountiful displays of vegetables and fruit), and the tempting aromas (lots of food vendors).  I got a little distracted by the beautiful fall colors at the honey table but then I snapped into focus and started filling my bag with eggs, eggplant, apples, garlic, spaghetti squash, bok choy, and watermelon radish.

Photo of eggs, garlic, eggplant etc.

I so admire the spirit of the farmers who work hard all week and diligently arrive (from long distances) early in the morning to set up their booths. More than a few farmers wore costumes and held down their canopies as the breeze turned into winter-y gusts that ripped through the canyon of city blocks.

Photo of vendors in costumes

In the end, I found a brochure that lifted my spirits…The Winter Farmers’ Market in November in December. (It is inside!)

I had a chuckle from this article that was re-tweeted on Saturday.  It explains the five types of people you might see at the market.  Check it out…which one are you?

 

 

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A Fall Roadtrip: Montana, Idaho, Washington and Back to Montana

21 Sep
by Deanne

Steve and I jumped at the chance to help Luke drive to Missoula, Montana.  We arrived early Sunday morning after an all night drive from Minnesota.   We arrived just in time for brunch at a busy breakfast place, Catalyst Cafe, which satisfied my craving for a cute cafe.  Luke’s week long photography class, the reason for our trip out to Montana, was just down the street so he arrived (slightly) refreshed after a night on the road.

Before hitting the road again, this time to visit my cousin in Coeur d’Alene, we visited a farmers’ market a few blocks away.  The weather was lovely and the colors vibrant.

Photo of vegetables at Missoula farmers market

On Sunday evening Steve and my cousin, Susan, bonded over preparing the evening meal.  They put together a wonderful steak salad that Susan had seen in this month’s Sunset Magazine. In the end, we sat back and enjoyed a congenial conversation and a sunset meal with Susan’s husband and their friends. 

Susan told us about a place near Spokane called Green Bluff.  She explained that Green Bluff is an area with more than a dozen farms that to visit.  After touring a few farms, we checked out beautiful Manito Park, just south of downtown Spokane and enjoyed lunch on the patio of Rockwood Bakery.  I really liked the feel of the Rockwood Bakery which is tucked into a little neighborhood only a few blocks from the park.

We had so much energy about being in the northwest again, we got the bright idea to go to Moscow, Idaho.  Since we grew up in Idaho, we’d traveled there for college visits during high school. Link to Photo of DeanneOn the way to Moscow, I remembered that Mary Jane Butters, who started MaryJanesFarm and the whole farmgirl craze was from the area. A few clicks on our mobile device;) and we found the address of her original  retail store.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go inside because they are closed on Mondays.

Tuesday we traveled back to Missoula through Lolo Pass, an area of importance in the Lewis and Clark expedition…we read a plethora of historical markers to refresh our knowledge of United States history.

Photo taken at Lolo Pass

Onward we traveled to a town near Bozeman.  There we met an industrious farmer named Gary who is doing some amazing things to provide people with gluten-free oats.  (I will write more about gluten-free oats in an upcoming post.)  Truly gluten-free oats are very difficult to find in the US But we think we’ve found some that will work for one of the breads Steve is busy developing.

We ended the evening at another farmers’ market in Bozeman.  There we wPhoto of Cowboy Farmeratched as people gathered around an outdoor wood fired pizza oven and we saw a cowboy farmer selling produce.

The next two days were equally busy with new beautiful vistas and more historical sights.  We saw old mining towns, lovely streams and the sight were Lewis and Clark had to portage around the Great Falls.  Now we are relaxing in a cozy little studio apartment and getting rested for our drive home.

Have you ever been to Montana, Idaho or Washington?  Do you have any fall road trips planned?