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Local farmers’ markets opening for summer

June 18, 2008
By Richard Gast, Franklin County Cornell Cooperative Extension
Freshly picked vegetables and fruits, homemade baked goods, locally prepared, pickled, brewed and smoked goods — all this and more — are on sale at the local farmers’ market. Stop in and select from the finest, the freshest and the best local produce and prepared foods that money can buy.

You can meet and visit with the growers, ask questions and get closer to the sources of locally grown and prepared wholesome, nutritious food. Customers can be confident and feel good about buying home grown food from their neighbors. It’s fun to talk to the folks that grow it. And producers appreciate feedback from their customers. When you shop at the farmers’ market, everybody wins.

In an age of global markets, it is all too easy to see how local towns and communities can easily lose touch with the efforts and the productivity of our area farmers and growers. Shopping at the farmers’ market says you support local growers and support the productive use of our land and water, as well. By shopping at the farmers’ market you help support the preservation of agricultural land and the knowledge of our agricultural heritage for future generations. What’s more, when you shop at the farmers’ market, you help strengthen our rural economy. Besides, locally grown and prepared foods tastes better and are more nutritious than fruits and vegetables that are picked before they’re ripe and then transported across the continent or halfway around the world.

The tradition of farmers’ markets can be traced back to ancient times. Farmers’ markets were the centers of villages and towns. They were not only places where people gathered to buy, barter and trade goods and services, but places where people met to exchange news and share stories with one another, as well. Many parts of the world have a tradition of farmers’ markets going back many centuries.

In much the same way, farmers’ markets have deep roots in our nation’s history. In 1806, Thomas Jefferson wrote about buying beef, eggs and vegetables at an outdoor market. Throughout much of the 19th century, outdoor market places were the heart of our American cities, and the farmers’ markets were the centers of commerce in rural communities. But as the country grew, everything changed. More and better roads were built nationwide, and more modern methods of refrigeration were invented and applied. It became possible to transport produce from large commercial farms to centers hundreds, even thousands of miles away. Wholesalers took advantage of opportunities to place fruit and vegetables produced by large commercial and corporate growers into neighborhood supermarkets owned by even larger corporations. The small farmer was unable to compete.

But, in recent decades, farmers’ markets have been making a comeback. Today, Americans spend well over a billion dollars annually at more than 2,500 farmers’ markets nationwide.

Your local farmers’ market is a place where people can come together, not just to buy and sell food, but to share gardening tips and ideas, recipes and seasonal information, as well. Shopping at the farmers’ market can be a thoroughly enjoyable experience. The customer gets the freshest, highest quality food possible, and the grower makes some money. There are no middlemen and no stockholders, just local, independent growers selling their own produce direct to the public.

Support your local farmers’ market.

Chateaugay Lake Farmers’ Market

Hollywood Inn Restaurant Lawn

Merrill, NY 12922

Market Manager: Jo Ellen Saumier

(518) 497-6038

Saturdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

June 21 – Aug. 30

Elizabethtown Farmers’ Market

Behind Adirondack Center Museum

Elizabethtown, NY 12932

Market Manager: Gina Agoney

(518) 293-7877

Fridays 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

May 16 – Oct. 10

Keene Farmers’ Market

Route 73 at Marcy Airfield

Keene, NY 12944

Market Manager: Dick Crawford

(518) 561-7167

Sundays 9:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

June 8 – Oct. 12

Lake Placid Farmers’ Market

Lake Placid Center for the Arts

Saranac Avenue

Lake Placid, NY 12946

Market Manager: Sam Hendren

(518) 834-7306.

Wednesdays 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

June 11 – October 15

Malone Farmers’ Market

Route 11 at Malone Airport

Malone, NY 12953

Market Manager: Vicky Lesniak

(518) 497-0083

Wednesdays Noon – 4:30 p.m.

June 4 – Oct. 8

Paul Smiths Market

Paul Smith’s College

Market Manager: Ellen Beeberman

(518) 891-7470

Fridays 2 – 5 p.m.

June 20 – September 26

Plattsburgh Farmers’ Market

Farmers Market Pavilion

Durkee, Broad and Bridge Streets

Plattsburgh, NY 12901

Market Manager: Pat Parker

(518) 493-6761

Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

June 27 – Aug. 29

Saturdays 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

May 12 – Oct. 6

Plattsburgh Farmers’

Green Market

Plattsburgh Church of the Nazarene

Broad and Cornelia Streets

Plattsburgh, NY 12901

Market Manager: Beth Spaugh

(518) 643-7822

Thursdays 2 - 6 p.m.

June 19 – Oct. 2

Saranac Lake

Farmers’ Market

Lake Flour Bakery

River and St. Bernard Streets

Saranac Lake, NY 12983

Market Manager: Nancy Moriarty

(518) 891-7194

Tuesdays 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

June 3 – Sept. 30

Schroon Lake Farmers’ Market

Village parking Lot

Schroon Lake, NY 12870

Market contact: Sam Hendren

(518) 834-7306

Mondays 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

June 30 – September 1

Ticonderoga Farmers’ Market

Route 9N just west of Moses Circle Monument

Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Saturdays 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

July – Oct.

Wilmington Farmers’ Market

Heritage Park – Route 86 and Hazelton Road

Wilmington, NY 12946

Market Manager: Marjorie Swift

(518) 946-7642

Thursdays 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

July 3 – Aug. 28

For information on farmers’ markets across the North Country, visit:

For information on farmers’ markets throughout New York State visit: Click on Farm and Market Search. Click on Farmers’ Markets.


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