Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Opening day!

When your colleague shows up with a giant bunch of balloons spilling out of her truck, you know it's going to be a good day at work. So it went for opening day of the much-anticipated Suitland Farmers' Market. Perfectly clear, sunny weather, gorgeous fruits and veggies grown by a core group of local farmers, lots of volunteer helpers, and tons of friendly shoppers... not a bad way to start the season. Sure there were some hiccups, but together we made things work.

Barbed wire on the top of the fence popping the balloons? No problem, tie them down lower on the fence.

Times printed incorrectly on the signs? No sweat, use duct tape to write out the correct times over top.

No place to pick up lunch? Well, we are in a food desert -- that's why we're here! -- but you can grab a mediocre sandwich down the block and slice some farmers' market tomatoes and cucumbers on top to jazz it up. How about a handful of local spinach, too, or some chopped up garlic scapes? Maybe some grown a few blocks away?

I'm not going to lie: I was especially excited to see some of the fruits of our labors from what we'd planted with students at Drew-Freeman, but there was plenty of beautiful produce at the traditional farm stands as well. Which is good since quite a few community members and folks at the Census Bureau across the way came to check things out and support the area's first farmers' market in a long, long time. According to Delante, my official record-keeper -- a first-time volunteer who I may have won over forever with a quart of fresh strawberries -- we had upwards of 170 shoppers over the course of the 4-hour market. Not too shabby, all things considered. Most importantly, nearly everyone left with smiles like this one, and similarly loaded shopping bags.

I arrived home last night slightly sunburned, moderately loaded down with fresh produce, and completely exhausted. And proud: we did it!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for your comment! Just making sure this isn't spam.... Thanks for your patience. :)Ibti