Farmers Markets are back! I had a chance to check out the Daley Plaza market to get a taste of what to expect this year.
Farmers markets are the best way to get freshly grown produce and freshly made goods from local farmers and vendors. May 12 signifies the start of the 32nd Chicago season, bringing more than 70 vendors selling fresh fruits, vegetables, baked goods, preserves, plants and flowers to over 20 neighborhoods throughout the City of Chicago. Markets are held Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday depending on the neighborhood location and will continue through October. The season starts at Daley Plaza, which will continue to hold its market every Thursday morning starting at 7AM and continuing until 3PM.
The Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events (DCASE) and COUNTRY Financial are also kicking off the 2011 Chicago Farmers Markets season by revealing the winner of the fourth annual Reusable Bag Design Contest live on Daley Plaza Thursday, May 12 at 11am. Chicago Public School students participated in the contest and the winner will receive a $1,000 scholarship in addition to having his or her design displayed on 10,000 reusable shopping bags that will be distributed at farmers markets throughout the city this summer.
The Chicago Department of Family and Support Services and DCASE are also partnering with Experimental Station to double the number of Chicago Farmers Markets accepting Link cards during the 2011 season. The pilot program, launched in 2010, will now expand to a total of ten City Farmers Markets.The Chicago Farmers Market program is presented by DCASE.
For more information about markets, including locations, growing calendar and recipes visit: chicagofarmersmarkets.us.