Successful Market Season, ‘Party-esque’ Atmosphere Downtown Closes

Citizens can encourage grocery stores to support local growers year-round: Bishop

The Peterborough Downtown Farmers’ Market has closed for the season but enjoying the bounty of local farmers’ products is possible year-round.

On the heels of a fruitful 2019 season, Jill Bishop, market manager, says the market may have closed Oct. 23 but the opportunities to purchase and rally for local produce don’t need to end.

The 2019 season was successful despite the weather posing some challenges for farmers with an extremely wet and colder-than-usual spring, followed by a very dry summer.

“However, they worked hard as usual and were still, along with our other great vendors, able to fill their tables with local bounty throughout the season,” Jill tells Electric City Magazine.

“We enjoyed another season, closing off Charlotte Street and throwing a street party-esque Farmers’ Market every Wednesday.”

Jill says the best thing that happened at the market was the collision of vendors and the citizens who support them. “Our wonderful vendors working hard to bring amazing food to Charlotte Street on a weekly basis, and our wonderful customers for coming out and supporting them” was key.

Another highlight of the season was the markets’ Iron Chef Challenge. Four local chefs had 90 minutes to transform identical market baskets into fabulous meals. “We love seeing local chefs work with the amazing ingredients available at market, showcasing the local bounty available in our region and bringing customers out to market to enjoy the event,” Jill says.

Throughout the colder months, there are two Saturday markets in the region where people can find many of the Peterborough Downtown Farmers’ Market vendors — the Peterborough Regional Farmers’ Market (Peterborough Square) and the Peterborough Farmers’ Market (Morrow Building).

Many vendors do take the time off to rest, but customers looking to buy local food can shop at those markets, visit the local Food Shop, choose Nourish’s Just Food Box, and frequent other restaurants and support other shops that buy local wares.

“They can also advocate for their grocery stores to purchase from and support local growers if they are not already,” Jill adds.

The Peterborough Downtown Farmers’ Market shut down Charlotte Street to vehicle traffic between Louis and George streets every Wednesday since early May from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The market featured 30 local farmers, chefs, bakers and artisans offering food and other products from the region.

This season was the 22nd year of bringing fresh, locally-grown seasonal produce and products to downtown Peterborough. Since it was a producers-only market, shoppers could be sure they were buying directly from the farmers, growers, bakers and chefs themselves and could also learn about diverse local produce as it came into season.

Along with monthly special events showcasing seasonal bounty, chefs provided samples and offered on-site cooking demonstrations and innovative ideas for using market products throughout market season.

For more information about the market, visit the website.

Photo courtesy of the Peterborough Downtown Farmers’ Market Facebook page.

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