Thursday, September 1, 2011

Summer Redux

Well, September isn't trying to make friends, is it? At this writing (Thursday, 1:30 PM), it's 97 degrees outside. Tomorrow's high is forecast to be 99 degrees. And Saturday? A cool 91 degrees. I guess we can all pretend it's July one last time...

... and make pesto for our Labor Day festivities. You can also still pick up peaches from southern IL (definitely on the wane, so now's the time to stock up if you do any preservation) and sweet corn for the grill.

Other fruits and veg you'll see at the Market this weekend besides those mentioned above: tomatoes of all kinds, melons of all kinds, beans, okra, greens, peppers, eggplant, cucucmbers, summer squash & zucchini, onions, potatoes, carrots, fresh herbs, nectarines (probably the last weekend for these), assorted berries (probably the last weekend for these, too), and some early apples/pears and fall squashes. This is in addition to the frozen, farm-raised meats, farmstead goat cheese and goat's milk gelato, farm-raised eggs, honey, and home-grown/arranged flowers. And while it's hard to think about fall plantings and flowers, chrysanthemum season is upon us, and several of our plant and flower folks will have them ready for you to take home.

As always, there'll be a wide variety of baked goods and prepared foods, iced/hot coffee and tea and other beverages, and the work of area artisans to check out. This weekend woodworkers, photographers, candle and soapmakers, upcycled apparel creators, painters, glassblowers, knitters & crocheters, and others will be showing their work at the Market. 

A few vendors you might have been wondering about:

Danville Gardens: Back in their usual Row 3 digs this week.
Blue Ribbon Apiaries: Back for 2 dates in September - this weekend and 9/17.
Veggie Trails: on (possibly permanent) hiatus.
Sager Farms, aka "The Peach Lady From Southern IL": Done for the season.
Eberlin's Orchard: Done for the season.
Red Herring: Done for the season - too busy making food on campus!

Is there someone you've been wondering about? Drop us a line and we can try to help you out.

Community organizations often take a break over Labor Day weekend, but we have some great groups coming this weekend - among them the U of I Nanotech folks, who will be doing some demos at the Market this weekend. For a preview for what they'll be up to, check out this video. Other visitors include Vet Med, Illinois Club, Champaign County HOUSE, Jobs For Justice, Champaign County Democrats, and several more. Organizations are now located on the west end of the Market, between the two entrances, and are a great resource for information and volunteer opportunities.

Details about our event with Ken Meter will be available ASAP - in the meantime, mark your calendar for September 10, 10:30 AM - noon, at Common Ground Food Co-op. Ken will be delivering a presentation about central IL's existing food system and things we can do to make our local food economy much more robust. He'll also be taking questions from the audience. This is an important issue that affects all of us - it would be great to see you there.

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