Thursday, October 21, 2010

I Said Orange

Okay, procrastinators. It's time.

There is no better time than right now to get your Halloween pumpkins for jack-o-lanterning, and there is no better place to procure them than Urbana's Market at the Square. The traditional pumpkins for carving are abundant, but growers also offer more... unusual permutations of pumpkin in all different colors and shapes and sizes. Get a little weird with your decorations this season!

Also, it's worth mentioning that the fall produce is absolutely gorgeous this season. The greens are incredibly lush, the carrots are beyond sweet, the potatoes and sweet potatoes have incredible depth of flavor, the scent of apples on the breeze is incredible...

The weather is not forecast to be very cooperative for this weekend, but I'm going to be an optimist and say that we'll dodge those raindrops. Here's one reason why - our final Sprouts at the Market event is scheduled for this weekend, and we're really excited about it. This event will be co-presented with the Eastern Illinois Foodbank as they close out their annual Food For Families activities, and the goal here is to teach kids ages 3-8 a little about food insecurity in our area and what they can do to help. As with other Sprouts activities, there will be several tables throughout the Market kids can visit, sample locally-grown fruits and vegetables, and learn a thing or two about local food and our food system. We do ask that everyone sign in at the main Sprouts tent, which will be next to the City tent at the northwest entrance to the Market. The event is totally free and goes from 9 AM - 11 AM.

The Market will look different this weekend. As we head toward the close of the season, vendor attendance drops, and we consolidate the Market in order to prevent gaps and to encourage people to shop the whole Market. We did our best to transpose Row 5 vendors into Row 4, but a few are in other places throughout the Market. If you're missing someone PLEASE ASK! Market staff are more than happy to help you locate your favorite vendors.

One more thing - don't forget that the Urbana Business Association's Holiday Market picks up on 11/13 where Market at the Square leaves off on 11/6. They'll be open inside Lincoln Square Mall from 8 AM - 1 PM through 12/18. Produce vendors, art and crafts folks, Santa Claus, music, and much more will be featured at this Market - it's so great to know that you'll be able to buy fresh, local food at this Market right up until the holidays.

Market geeks: Get your fill of 2008's and 2009's annual reports here!

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