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Farmers' Market Opens in North Adams

Stephanie Farrington

Mayor Richard Alcombright was picking up apple brownies from Rona Brandt at the farmers' market. Below, the market offers fresh produce, flowers and jewelry and other handmade items.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Looking for local fruits and vegetables? Don't want to drive all over the area to get them? Well, there's a solution for that.

The first of many weekly farmers' markets took place in North Adams on Saturday morning in the St. Anthony Municipal Parking Lot near the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art.

Farmers from around the region gathered for the city's first market of the season to sell the fruits of their labors. They'll be there from 8 to noon on Saturdays until the end of October. Several other local markets, including Williamstown's on Spring Street on Saturdays, have already opened.

Market manager Diana Cirillo said she hopes to expand the market over the course of the summer. Her mission is to make healthy, locally grown food accessible to all residents of North Adams. "People can use their SNAP benefits in the market to give them more choices for healthier eating."

The market is able to accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program digital cards as well as coupons for the Women, Infants and Children food prograM.

Cirillo is also hoping to grow the market as the season progresses. "I'm hoping to bring more locally grown food to the attention of the community," she said. "We have room for more farmers. We're always looking for farmers who want to come and sell their fruits, vegetables, honey, maple syrup, eggs, meat — whatever they produce. It would be awesome if we could fill the whole lot.

"Eventually what we'd like to do is bring a learning experience into it, have local recipes, give information on growing food, what it takes to produce it, where things come from, things like that," she continued.

Local farmers on hand were selling garlic, raspberries, beets, radishes, carrots and salad greens as well as beans and peas and all manner of early summer vegetables. There were also cut flowers, home-baked goods and even some jewelry available — all of it produced right here in the Berkshires or close by.

Emma Morin has been a vendor at the market for 12 years. She doesn't have a farm but her home garden is large enough to produce an abundance of vegetables and she makes jams, jellies and knitted goods to sell as well.

As early as 9 a.m., some stands were beginning to run low. Rona Brandt brings baked goods and said she runs out of stock every week, so you might want to arrive early if you have a particular favorite – like her whoopie pies or her apple brownies (before Mayor Richard Alcombright scoops them up).

The farmers' market has room for more booths; $10 will get you a spot on the lot for the day. 

If you missed the market or you just want to sleep late on Saturdays, some of the farmers will be at next week's Northern Berkshire Food Festival, which takes place on Main Street from noon until 4 on Sunday, July 17.

You can find the market and the Food Festival on Facebook.

Stephanie Farrington is a Canadian journalist taking a break in the Berkshires but who can't seem to stop writing.

Tags: farmers market      

Williamstown Farmers' Market Opens Saturday

Staff Reports

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Farmers Market returns to the Spring Street parking lot on Saturday, May 28. The new hours of the market are Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

There will be a wide variety of locally grown produce and cheeses, organic meats, homemade baked goods, and original handcrafted items.

Some of the vendors include:

Cricket Creek Farm – Artisan Cheeses and Baked Goods
Raw milk cheeses, Tobasi and Maggie’s Round as well as newly added fresh, pasteurized cheese in a number of flavors. Also bread, cookies, muffins, scones and granola made in the in-farm bakery. 
Contact: Lesley Graham, 413-458-5888 or  www.cricketcreekfarm.com.

Williamstown’s favorite little cakes in chocolate, chocolate raspberry, lemon, almond. Grandma-style crumbcake, too.  Six-inch diameter cake serves six to eight. Baked in a certified kitchen in Williamstown using King Arthur flour, butter, local eggs and fruit in season. They often sell out early so an email or phone call to reserve your favorite flavor is encouraged.
Contact: Judy Turbin, 413-458-9930, Helene Armet, 413-458-8778, or BabyCakes2468@gmail.com.

Peace Valley Farm
Small family farm in South Williamstown supplying fresh produce to local restaurants, Williams College, and the Farmers’ Market. They will join the market starting around the third week in June when they have available a variety of greens and sugar snap peas. As the season progresses, more and more vegetables become available. Note that they do not sell directly from the farm.
Contact: Bill and Susie Stinson, 413-458-4866 or peacevalleyfarm@gmail.com.

Memphremagog Studios
Born on the Vermont lake that bears her studio’s name, award-winning artist Emily Beth Errion creates a distinctive line of original, handcrafted jewelry, embossed glass, and specialty gift designs in the Green Mountain State.

Crow Hill Farm
The Pownal, Vt., farmstand offers art kits for kids, watercolor note cards, fingerless texting gloves, tiny baby organic wool dolls and hand carved birds. 
Contact: Merry Anderson and Craig Lawrence, 802-823-7807

Sweet Brook Farm
This South Williamstown farm offers maple syrup, maple candy and cream, maple-roasted nuts, alpaca roving and yarns, and fresh seasonal vegetables. Farm store is also open to the public from Memorial Day through Labor Day, seven days a week, 10 to 6.
Contact: Pete and Beth Phelps, 413-884-4246, 877-45-SYRUP, www.sweetbrookfarm.mybigcommerce.com.

Peterman Boards and Bowls
The handcrafted  wooden bowls and boards by Spencer Peterman of Turners Falls that made Oprah's "O" list in January come in cherry, black walnut and spalted maple. These museum store and gallery seconds are half off his regular retail prices.
Contact: Andree Clearwater, 413-834-0833.

Original designs in silver, gold, as well as original takes and twists on beading. The artist creates pieces during the market as well and custom designs on the spot as well.
Contact: Jenny Dewar, jennydewjewels@aol.com. www.jennydew.com.

Quimby’s Farm
The Hancock farm offers brown eggs, maple syrup, bedding plants and fresh-picked vegetables. Contact: 413-458-5402

Black Queen Angus Farm
100 percent grass-fed, antibiotic-free, hormone free, Animal Welfare Approved beef, pastured pork and meadow veal. Pre-orders are suggested with delivery at the Farmers’ Market. Contact: Morgan Hartman, 413-358-8435. www.blackqueenangus.com.

Apple Tree Hill Organic Farm
This Hancock farmstand and antique/collectible shop brings potted organic herbs, jams and jellies, maple cream, organic vegetables and fruits, honey and artwork by Kelly. Newly added baked goods, such as whoopie pies and breads. Farmstand and shop also open on weekends 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Contact: Roger and Nancy Johnson, 413-458-3933 or appletreehill@mindspring.com

Berkshire Mountain Pottery
From her studio in South Williamstown, local potter Anne Hogeland offers hand-thrown stoneware including coffee mugs, latte bowls, plates, dishes, pitchers, platters, canisters and fruit bowls. All pieces are lead-free and oven-, microwave-, and dishwasher-safe.  Contact: 413-441-4811.


Berkshire Grown Ramps up for 'Farmed and Foraged'

Berkshire Grown

Photo courtesy of Guido's Fresh Marketplace, Jamie O'Brien, photographer.

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — In celebration of the spring season, Berkshire Grown will host "Farmed and Foraged: A Weekend of Spring Flavors," a culinary celebration of farmed and foraged seasonal foods at area restaurants from Friday, May 21, through Sunday, May 23.

The celebration highlights Berkshire Grown restaurants that have made a commitment to source wild and local edibles from area forests, fields and farms at the start of the growing season, which is a challenge for chefs in the Northeast.

This year, Berkshire Grown will feature 23 restaurants throughout the region. Participants will offer an array of prix fixe menus and a la carte selections to celebrate this farm-to-table dining event. Menus will feature wild edibles, locally grown produce, Berkshire artisan cheeses, heritage breed meats, locally made bread and chocolate, and Berkshire-crafted beer and spirits. Dates of participation, menu and a la carte offerings and pricing will vary at each location.

"We’re excited to see many more restaurants participating in this year’s Farmed and Foraged event," said Barbara Zheutlin, executive director of Berkshire Grown. "This is an opportunity for community members to celebrate spring by supporting our local restaurants and farms and tasting some wild edibles they’ve been hearing about but may not have tried before."

Participating restaurants include Allium Restaurant and Bar, Baba Louie’s, Brix Wine Bar, Castle Street Café, EnlightenNext, Gramercy Bistro@Mass MoCA, Guido’s Fresh Marketplace, Gypsy Joynt, Haven Cafe & Bakery, John Andrews Restaurant, La Terrazza Restaurant at Gateways Inn, Mexican Radio, Mezze Bistro and Bar, Mission Bar and Tapas, Napa Wine Bar and Restaurant, Nudel, Perigee, Stagecoach Tavern, The Inn at Sweet Water Farm, The Old Inn on the Green, The Red Lion Inn and The Williamsville Inn.

"We are encouraging everyone to come out and try delicious dishes highlighting the local harvest. Although our crops are limited at this time of year, the fiddleheads and ramps, the maple syrup and mushrooms, and the meats, cheeses and breads make for an exceptional meal, especially when prepared by our region’s extraordinarily talented chefs," said Zheutlin. "Berkshire Grown member restaurants are committed to the ‘buy local’ mission and this enticing event is one not to be missed."

Baba Louie’s, Castle Street Cafe, Guido’s Fresh Marketplace, Mezze Restaurant Group, The Red Lion Inn, Williams College Dining Services and the Zilkha Center for Environmental Initiatives at Williams College are official sponsors.


A full listing of offerings from participating restaurants is here.

Last year’s event inspired the Pioneer Valley to participate. This year, Bistro Les Gras of Northampton and Hope and Olive of Greenfield will offer Farmed and Foraged menus. For more information, contact the restaurants directly.

Visit www.berkshiregrown.org for additional details. To receive Berkshire Grown’s newsletter for more farm-to-table events, contact buylocal@berkshiregrown.org.

Tags: Berkshire Grown      
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Stephanie Farrington of Berkshire Food is contributing to our Eats blog — all about food, all the time. 


Seasonal Farmers Markets

Berkshire South Community Market
15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington
Saturdays through Oct. 27 from 11 to 3

Berkshire Mall Market
Sears parking lot, Route 8
Wednesdays & Saturdays through November from 8 to 2

North Adams Farmers Market
St. Anthony's Municipal Parking
Saturdays through Oct. 27 from 8 to noon

Great Barrington Farmers Market
Taconic Avenue & Castle Street
Saturdays through October from 9 to 1

Lenox Farmers Market
70 Kemble St., Shakespeare & Company
Fridays through Oct. 5 from 1 to 5

Oits Farmers Market
L & M Auto, 2000 East Otis Road (Rte. 23)
Saturdays through Oct. 6 from 9 to 1

Pittsfield Farmers Market
First and Fenn streets, across from the Common
Saturdays, May 11 through Oct. 26, from 9 to 1

Sheffield Farmers Market
Old Parish Church, Main Street
Fridays through September from 3 to 7

Williamstown Farmers Market
Spring Street parking lot
Saturdays, May 25 through October, from 9 to 1

Hoosick Falls, N.Y.
The Armory
Wednesdays, 4 to 7


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