Farmers Market making summer debut on Friday

Published 7:32 pm Thursday, June 3, 2010

Organizers of the Brookhaven Farmers Market are expecting theirbiggest and best year yet, and the clock is ticking down toFriday’s opening day.

Local farmers and produce growers have been working toward thedeadline, and the fruits (and vegetables) of their labors will beon display at Railroad Park Friday starting at 7:30 a.m.

Mississippi State University Extension Service Agent RebeccaBates said this year, in addition to the customary fruits,vegetables and breads, there will also be fresh dairy products andberries added to the inventory.

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“We really feel like this will be the best market ever, becausewe have a lot of new vendors, and more produce than we’ve had inthe past,” she said.

Bates said that there will be fresh blueberries ready forFriday, as well as a vendor that processes his own milk. The boothwill have skim, whole and chocolate milk as well as a variety ofcheeses.

Produce-wise, Friday will also showcase a lineup of sweet corn,new potatoes, squash, cucumbers, eggplant, snap beans, greentomatoes and berries, Bates said. There will also be bread vendors,cakes and candies, as well as homemade fudge.

“I’m going to have to stay away from that booth,” Bates saidwith a laugh. “I don’t want to hurt myself there.”

And past this Friday, organizers have plenty in store to keepthe market booming through the summer.

“Next week is Dairy Day at the farmers market, and we have arecipe contest. This year it’s side dishes,” she said. “There hasto be at least one cup of dairy in the recipe.”

In addition, there is free ice cream and chocolate milk, and acalf for the children to play with next Friday, Bates said. Therewill also be a fake cow with rubber udders so that children canexperience the milking process if they want to.

June 25 brings soil testing day, Bates said, where the first 10people to bring soil to be sent off for testing at MSU will gettheir soil tested free. For everyone else, it’s $6.

And in order to enhance the shopping process, Bates saidshoppers can become “Friends of the Brookhaven Farmers Market” andfor $10 they can get a market bag that they can bring back and shopwith each week.

There is also now a Facebook page for the Farmers Market, Batessaid, where updates on available produce and activities will beupdated regularly.

The market opens at 7:30 a.m. and is open until everything issold out.

“Get there early, and get yourself a market bag,” Batessaid.