My Heart is a Farmers’ Market: Confessions of a Market Manager

This is a guest post by Molli Reynolds, Manager of the Pemberton Farmers Market. It is part of a weekly series designed to get you inspired to check out the Pemberton Farmers Market, happening at the downtown Pemberton Community Barn every Friday, 3-6:30pm until mid October. Follow them on Facebook or on instagram at @pembyfarmersmarket for more eye-candy and inspiration.

keep your friends close and your farmers closer 2

Part One – The Farmers

My heart is a farmers’ market. This is a curious thing to discover after living with it for as many years as I have, but I’m good with it. In fact, my heart is as joyful and curious as a basket of puppies at the start of every market day so it is somewhat surprising that it took me this long to recognize it. I realize that this may require some explaining and hopefully I can clarify it in such a way that you, too, will discover that your heart has a similar leaning.

The Farmers

First, let me clarify that I speak here purely as an enthusiastic novice gardener. I still experience that childlike thrill and awe with every seed I place in the soil that comes up as a plant. And not just any plant, but the kind pictured on the package! Yes, I am the woman dancing in the corner whenever I discover a sprout has popped up through the earth. And don’t even get me started on harvest time.

This is, in fact, why I have always imagined that a part of me would love to be a farmer. Even though I suspect that on a mass scale, this reaction to the seeming miracle of growth every year would abate to some degree. (It would have to, otherwise how would I ever get anything done as a farmer?) And I know that those little sprouts are just the beginning of what it means to be a farmer. There is far more to it than many of us could ever imagine. What does each plant or creature need, how long will it take to maturity, what does it need to grow healthy, strong and abundantly, when to harvest, how to store? And all this on a big scale. A feed-the-town scale.

And that is when I am most grateful for a farmers’ market. I can visit the farmers, meet the people who have put in all the love, time and work to grow these veggies and meats that feed our community. I can show my appreciation to those wonderful people who don’t let the happy-my-veggies-sprouted dances get in the way of the real work of animal husbandry and crop maintenance. I figure the next best thing to being a farmer, is getting to know one. And my heart is all happy when I do.

Next week – The Bakers and Chefs

In the meantime, make the market a part of your Friday routine. Reclaim your pantry, and the original commons.

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