The Nokomis Farmers Market finishes its maiden season this week
Look for the bright orange signs at 52nd and Chicago...
With just three market dates, the Nokomis Farmers Market debuted on a trial basis this summer. Offering a mid-week evening market in June, July, and August, this south Minneapolis venture is definitely bringing the neighborhood out to eat, shop, and be merry, but the final installment this Wednesday will be the true test. Will this fledgling market find its way? Here's our take on the new kid on the block.
The small but mighty Kingfield Farmers Market
Marsha Trainer Approaching the bikes, kids and crowd at the Nokomis Farmers Market
Where it is: East 52nd Street and Chicago Avenue South, Minneapolis
Day of the week/hours: Wednesday, August 27 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. (the last one of the summer)
Vendors of note: K2 Flowers and Edibles, Café Palmira (coffee), Walsh Ridge Farm (maple syrup and jam), Singing Hills Dairy (cheese), Sunrise Flour Mill (heritage wheat), and the Beez Kneez (honey)
The beautiful, not yet fresh cut, herbs and flowers of K2
Market features: Of course there are produce vendors with "tomatoes, sweet corn, carrots, potatoes, onions, green beans, beets, leeks, apples," (according to the market's twitter feed) but the smallish market also has crafts, coffee, herbs, edible flowers, maple syrup, jams, homegrown flowers, organic flour, honey, and food trucks. Since this is a late afternoon/early evening affair, there are tables and chairs aplenty where families enjoy their market-procured suppers. Nearby, live musicians entertain the eaters, playing especially to the young ones in the crowd.
Hamdog played to the crowd in July
Market vibe: Alex Cortes, market director for both the Kingfield and Fulton farmers markets, helped organize this one and bring vendors to the space, so it does bear a resemblance to its sister marts, particularly in terms of the vendors.
Carlos sells coffee grown on his family's Guatemalan farm and roasted by Bull Run.
However, this is truly a south, not southwest, Minneapolis affair -- it seems that most of the customers are from the surrounding neighborhoods and are excited to have an agora to call their own. As previously mentioned, this is its first year, so some things are still getting hammered out. (For example, at the July market, the health inspector was out, grilling the food vendors in front of the guests. It was a wee bit awkward, but not enough to deter hungry shoppers.)
All the happy eaters!
Last thought: The June premiere was packed, while July's date was a little slow until the after-work crowd hit. This third and final August episode will go a long way toward cementing the future and the character of the Nokomis Farmers Market. But it is safe to say that this mid-week market is popular with the young families that pepper Hale, Diamond Lake, Nokomis, and Page. That lends the market a sweet, family-friendly tone, even as the newbie works to find its footing.
Come for the vegetables and stay for dinner!
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