by Madison V. Fisler
May 3, 2013. The Watauga County Farmers’ Market begins its 2013 season on Saturday, May 4. Along with the ever-present exceptional offering of local products, the Farmers’ Market hosts cooking demonstrations by chef Clark Barlowe of Heirloom Restaurant, live music from the Produce Pickers and activities all day for the children hosted by PHARMN. Also, free Farmers’ Market gift certificates will be raffled off.
This season, there are some changes from last season. First, the markets extend through November instead of taking a break in October. In addition, one thing for parents to note is that the kids mini-market will be held every other weekend as opposed to once a month due to popular demand.
“This year, we have an amazing variety of local products, plants, baked goods, produce and crafts,” said Tori Cox, market manager for the Watauga County Farmers’ Market.
“For people who haven’t been, its more than just a shopping trip, its a cultural experience.”
The Watauga Farmers’ Market hosts only local vendors. The definition of local, according to the Farmers’ Market, is Watauga County and its bordering counties like Ashe, Avery, Wilkes and Caldwell.
For most people in the High Country, shopping local at the Farmers’ Market each summer is a great way to start a Saturday morning.
“Buying local gives me a sense of being connected to the food that I am eating,” Cox said. “Its about trusting where your food is coming from. The people who are growing it care about who is eating it. Knowing that the money is going to the farmer rather than a big industry is great too. All of these things bring us closer to our food. You can feel good about what you’re putting into your body.”
Open Saturday mornings from May to November, the Watauga County Farmers’ Market has been a Boone institution since 1974, showcasing the best of the best of local food, produce, meats, crafts and home goods.