Ashford Farmers’ Market opens for the season
By Kitty LeShay - ReminderNews
Ashford - posted Thu., May. 23, 2013
Regulars and newcomers enjoyed the opening day of the Ashford Farmers’ Market on Sunday, May 19. Shoppers could feel and see that spring was in fact here. Newly picked spinach, radishes, and varieties of lettuce with firm and shiny leaves were available for purchase.
Beth Supina will be the market master for her third season and will be a vendor as well for Supina Family Farms. “We wanted to open early this year because vendors wanted to sell their plants,” she said.
May 19 was the opening Sunday, and the market will continue weekly until shortly before Christmas, when the Bartons will be there with their hand-made wreaths and cemetery boxes. On the opening Sunday, the Bartons had many varieties of the 53 types of tomatoes they sell, including many heirloom types which seem to be in popular demand.
The Ashford Farmers’ Market is a growers/producers market only. Many of the same vendors will be back this year selling baked goods, maple and fruit syrups, fruits and vegetables, herbal products. “So far, our two new vendors this year are Kettle Corn and Circle Farm. We hope to have more specialty vendors and expand our offerings to seafood, poultry, beef, lamb and cheese,” Supina said. “We would welcome more local growers as well,” she added. Supina hopes to have 10 to 15 vendors at the market when the season goes into full production mode.
Growers welcome new vendors. “Competition is good. It brings in more people,” Julie Barton said. “Farming is full-time work. You have to love it,” she said.
In addition to getting fresh, locally-grown vegetables and fruits, shoppers have an opportunity to support local producers. The farmers’ market is a social event; people exchange recipes, and growers give helpful information on how to prepare produce.
There is often some entertainment and informational sessions. Loretta Wrobel is setting that up for the market. “Farmers’ markets are community venues for the public to learn about new businesses and initiatives and for non-profits to discuss their mission,” she said. If anyone is doing a new kind of business and would like to set up a table to inform the community about their product or program, contact Wrobel at 860-429-2629.
The Ashford Farmers’ Market is held every Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., across from the Babcock Library in Warrenville Center, Route 44.