It’s quite inspiring and rather humbling to encounter the enthusiasm and expertise of our Fayette County Farmers Market vendors. Whether growing fruits, flowers or vegetables, turning fruits into pies or jams, crafting with wood or yarn, baking delicious treats for animals of several kinds, turning clay into ceramics, harvesting honey from bee hives, creating skin care products, each vendor is engaged in something she or he is passionate and knowledgeable about.
Most vendors can’t and don’t make their primary income from the market. But market shoppers will always find vendors who are gracious and happy to meet with market attendees whether they make a purchase or not. They generally like to talk about what they do, and why they do it, what works and what one might try instead, as well as hear about the experiences of the customer. And while each market day requires a great deal of time and energy – to grow/bake/pot/craft/create/plan, then package, load, drive, unload, display, sit, greet, sell, re-load, drive and unload back at the home site—-you will find amazingly friendly farmers market vendors, even at the end of a long hot morning. Maybe this is because they are participating in a community event which allows them to show off what they are good at and excited about.
The market success must also be attributed to the patrons, the customers, the people who become the friends of the market. These patrons often make a bee-line for the vendor from whom they have been buying some special items for years. Whether it’s egg noodles, or fresh cut flowers, or a black berry pie, or perennial flowers and herbs, or first of the season tomatoes, they look for the vendor and product they have come to know and trust. They make a purchase because there is something there that they want, but ALSO because they want to make sure the market is viable and that vendors are supported as individuals.
It is mid-July. It is hot and humid, and one may wonder why anyone leaves the comfort of their home air conditioning to venture out as either a vendor or customer. But both DO venture out, and as a community, we are grateful!
In addition to the marvelous vendors and the children’s activity at the info booth, the market hosts two community guests.
Art on the Square (AOTS), an annual art event held in downtown Washington CH, will join the market this week. With them, they plan to bring paint and canvas to demonstrate technique and let market visitors try their hand at painting. They will also have t-shirts for sale and information on the event and how to sign up. This year’s event will take place on Aug. 10 and artists will spend the day painting on 4’x4’ mural style canvases, which are later sealed and displayed downtown. Paintings from the last two events are hung at The Salty Broads Patio, 216 Court St. in Washington C.H.
L. Priscilla’s Salon & Day Spa, a new salon offering services ranging from your standard cut and color to nails, facials, and hair extensions, is the other community guest. Owner Holly Heath is opening the full-service salon in honor of her late mother, Priscilla Williams, who passed nearly four years ago. The salon is set to open this month at 124 N. Fayette St. Stop by the community tent this week to see what L. Priscilla’s has planned for Washington Court House.
The following list contains the names and products of the vendors that expect to set up this Saturday in downtown Washington C.H. Other vendors may participate as well.
Margaret’s Memories (Sharon Fulkerson): Hand made items: knitted wash cloths and hand towels, necklaces, baby shower gifts blankets, hats, sweaters, bibs.
Persinger Produce & Cottage Foods (David Persinger and Julie Mosny): The Pie Lady will have local honey, cinni mini’s, cinnamon rolls, pecan sticky buns, buns bars, cherry cobbler, peach, apple, rhubarb, strawberry, rhubarb, strawberry and blackberry pies.
Wood Designed by DW (Debbie Welch): Handmade, unusual wood crafts. Hand made crocheted dishtowels, clothes, potholders, pocket books and baby booties. Special orders welcome. Cookies, fudge.
Bellafield Flowers (Brooke Waddell): Fresh bouquets including a mix of sunflowers, zinnias, cosmos, larkspur, and foliage.
Chilcote Farm (Bruce & Marlene Chilcote): Honey, new bar cookies to sample and buy. Chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter cookies, sugar cookies and oatmeal raisin cookies. Ooey gooey cinnamon swirl cakes, and chocolate sheet cake.
Cozy Baby Blessings (Nancy Cutter): Handmade baby essentials including blankets, burp cloths and teething rings.
DeBruin Family Dairy (Grant & Toni DeBruin): Organic produce, gourds, wildflower cards, homemade chocolate chip cookies.
Enchanting Acres (Amber Harris): Elephant garlic, garlic (mild and spicy), mild garlic scapes, bulbil heads (mild and spicy), elephant flower heads. Peas, green onions, onions.
Engedi (Beth Day, Alana Walters, Janet Bick): Assorted home baked goods (cinnamon rolls, bread, yeast rolls, cookies, pies) and a special children’s activity.
Garland Farm Sweetcorn (Ike & Justine Garland): Sweet corn.
Greens & Greenery (Katrina Bush): Fresh garlic and samples of roasted garlic. Natural insect repellent. Beeswax hand creams and salves and luffa sponges. Baklava, chocolate sheet cake bundt cakes, mini-pecan pies. Plants.
Jones Farm Fresh Produce (Jon & Taylor Jones): Sweet corn, red potatoes, green beans, candy onions, green onions, cabbage, garlic, squash, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, peaches, eggs, chicken- wings, chicken breast, patties, chorizo links, pork- chops, mild Italian and jalapeño links, bulk sausage, hamburger patties, turkey-ground, drums, turkey breast.
Kelsie’s K-9 Creations (Jennifer Anderson): Limited ingredient, purposeful cookies and treats for dogs.
King Farms (Jeff & Sandi King): Green onions, new red and Yukon gold potatoes, green beans, bi-color sweet corn, zucchini squash. Iced sugar cookies, fruit pies.