Summer is on the horizon and local farmer’s markets are getting more and more popular and can be found every weekend if you are willing to occasionally travel away from your home market. Whether you live in our beautiful region, spend weekends here (away from the hustle and bustle) or are just passing through, there is a farmer’s market that is just right for you. From King George to Irvington to West Point and many towns in between, you can experience the down home country living of a picture perfect farmer’s market. Not only will you be supporting local farmers and the local economy, you will be on the fast track to improving your family’s health and nutrition by cutting out the middleman and buying direct.
Food vendors abound at these community markets and you can find just about anything your heart desires. There is a wealth of delicious home grown vegetables and fruits when aptly in season. One can find farm raised beef or bison, fresh honey and goat cheese at most markets. Of course, there is a wealth of tasty seafood to be had when in season. The best oysters, crabs and local fish are plentiful and a signature of the Chesapeake Bay area and its tributaries. Delectable homemade baked goods are at the ready for your sweet tooth as well has fresh baked breads.
Craft vendors can be found aplenty also. Homemade items from handbags, jewelry, clothing, vases, bowls, hand painted glassware, hair accessories and so much more. Local folk art and popular country items are easy to spot. Do not be surprised if you see the local variety of seafood crafted onto anything and everything as well. You can purchase a piece of regional beauty from local artists by means of hand painted or drawn artworks and photography to take home for your delight to enjoy year round.
Cut flowers, plants, shrubbery and trees are also available when in season. Local growers and nurseries have their magnificent bounty on display for all to purchase and take home to plant in your own landscape. With colors so divine you will not be able to resist their loveliness.
Let’s not forget local businesses and organizations. You could find an area landscaper to plan your perfect garden, flower beds or rock garden and coi pond to make your surroundings serene. Even a contractor that can build that deck you have always dreamed of or the shed you have been wanting. Visit the booth of a local humane society with pets to adopt and learn the process for spay/neuter certificates for your house pets. They can even detail trap/neuter/release programs for feral cat colonies. You may find the American Red Cross seeking volunteers for their blood drives and learn how to help those in the area during their time of need.
It is possible to find local organizations having a fundraiser for the best of causes as well. Whether it is the local cheerleaders or a Boy Scout troop, they are working hard to sell their goods to raise money for a good cause.
You will surely find area artists at various markets creating the most beautiful portraiture on site. Choose from one-of-a-kind works of art they have on display for purchase or request your own custom piece. Feel free to ask them questions and maybe learn what motivates them or where they get their ideas.
Musicians and entertainment are at most area farmer’s markets also. There is an extensive variety of singers, bands and interesting instruments on any given market day. From folk singers, playing washboards and jugs, to rock, country and gospel, there is something for everyone.
The following is a compiled list of area farmers’ markets and their information. Keep in mind that all vendors listed may not attend each market; therefore organizers can only give an educated guess based on attendance from past events.
Deltaville, Middlesex County
Come by land or sea. Wander through the gardens and see the wondrous transformation of the boat F.D. Crockett. Come for breakfast or lunch and view the many waterfront displays.
Dates: April – November on the fourth Saturday of each month from 9 a.m.–1 p.m.
Location: Holly Point Nature Park at the Deltaville Maritime Museum, 287 Jackson Creek Road, Deltaville, VA 23043.
Contact: David Moran at 804-776-7200 or email@example.com or visit www.deltavillemuseum.com.
Gloucester, Gloucester County
Come visit our Summer Nights Market. Along with local market favorites, there is also live music, art and activities as well.
Dates: June – August, each Wednesday from 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Location: Carriage Court on Main Street in Gloucester, VA 23061
Contact: Gloucester Main Street Association at 804-695-0700 or visit www.gloucestervillage.com.
Heathsville, Northumberland County
Gaining in popularity, this farmer’s market helps support the adjacently located Rice’s Hotel / Hughlett’s Tavern, an historic Courthouse Tavern circa 1795. The grounds provide a covered pavilion plus outdoor booths and seeks to re-create the courthouse square atmosphere of that time period. Funds raised by the Tavern volunteers through the farmer’s market are used to keep the Tavern and Town Square in place for historic preservation.
Dates: April–October on the third Saturday of each month from 9 a.m.–1 p.m.
Location: Rt. 360 behind the old Heathsville Courthouse.
Contact: Corinne Anthony at 804-580-3377, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.rhhtfoundation.org
Irvington, Lancaster County
This market promises a lively monthly event and an opportunity to acquire items not often found in traditional stores. In addition to live music each date, many non-profit public service organizations are on site and sharing information.
Dates: May–November on the first Saturday of each month from 9 a.m.–1 p.m.
Location: Irvington Commons.
Contact: Joyce Bombay at 804-480-0697 or email@example.com.
King George, King George County
This market won the America’s Favorite Farmers Market in 2010. It is weekly with specific Community Days each month. This year’s market opened in April with over 600 people in attendance.
Dates: Weekly each Saturday, April – November 23, 2013 from 8 a.m. – 12 noon. The Holly Jolly Market will be
on Dec. 14.
Location: King George Elementary School at 10381 Ridge Road, King George, VA 22485.
Contact: King George is currently searching for a new manager. For vendor applications contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email email@example.com or visit www.thefarmersmarket.co (not .com).
Mathews, Mathews County
Again this year Mathews Farmers’ Market has a Community Host tent to promote fellowship and community at the market. Various organizations will host the tent. This market sports different themes and various musical acts so please visit the calendar for a full listing. Each week through September the Mathews Master Gardeners will have a “Help Table” where people can ask questions or bring problem plants for gardening advice. Some other activities include informational displays by the Mathews Main Street Committee, Friends of the Mathews Memorial Library, Middle Peninsula Adult Literacy Program, the Bay School Community Arts School, the Lions and Rotary Clubs and many others throughout the summer, along with musical guests.
Dates: Each Saturday April – October from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Location: Historic Courthouse Green on the corner of Church Street in downtown Mathews.
Contact: 804-725-5747 or visit www.mathewsmainstreet.org.
Montross, Westmoreland County
New to the market scene this year, Montross Market Days is bringing it back for the first time in over 25 years. Sponsored by the Greater Montross Partnership for Revitalization in an effort to encourage people to visit downtown and also buy locally from downtown businesses as well as fresh produce, plants and wares offered by market vendors.
Dates: On the first Saturday of each month, May – September from 8 a.m. – 1 p.m., rain or shine.
Location: At the courthouse square in downtown Montross.
Contact: Call Becky Nelson 703-598-2112, email
firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.montrossmarket.wordpress.com and it is a work in progress
Tappahannock, Essex County
Sponsored by the Tappahannock Main Street Program, the Town of Tappahannock and Essex County. The market was created in 2010 by the Tappahannock Main Street Program with the twin goal of making fresh healthy food easily accessible to the residents of Tappahannock and surrounding neighborhoods and bringing new events and activities into the downtown historic district. Each market features a guest artist and local musicians as well as a wine garden with local wineries.
Featured artists: TBA
Dates: April to November on the third Saturday of each month from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. *No traditional market in
June, but please visit Rivahfest on June 15 in downtown Tappahannock.
Location: Courthouse Green on Prince Street and Fountain Green on Cross Street in historic downtown Tappahannock, Virginia 22560.
Contact: Lindsey Atkinson at 804-445-2067 or email email@example.com or visit www.tappahannockmarket.com.
Urbanna, Middlesex County
Sponsored by the Urbanna Business Association and the Town of Urbanna. At each market there are baked goods, food and beverages, live music and a 50/50 raffle available. There is a playground nearby for children and free parking is available.
Dates: May–September on the second Saturday of each month from 9 a.m.–1 p.m.
Location: Taber Park in historic downtown Urbanna at the corner of Rappahannock Avenue and Bonner Street.
Contact: Call 804-832-3113 or visit www.urbanna.com/pages/farmersmarket.html.
Warsaw, Richmond County
The goal of the Warsaw-Richmond County Main Street Program is to make the Warsaw Farmers’ Market an economic and community event, attracting consumers around the Northern Neck and Middle Peninsula. It will serve as a benefit for tourists, travelers and residents alike to stop, shop and benefit from the great resources our area has to offer.
Dates: May – September, on the second Saturday of each month from 9 a.m.–1 p.m.
Location: Courthouse Circle
Contact: Market manager at firstname.lastname@example.org, like their page on Facebook or visit www.warsawfarmersmarket.com.
West Point, King William County
This farmers’ market requires that goods sold at the market be grown, made or produced by the vendors themselves. There is a vast assortment of vendors as the seasons change.
Dates: May – September, each Thursday from 2 – 6 p.m. and each Saturday from 8 a.m. – 12 noon.
New Location: On the corner of Chelsea Street and Rt. 33, follow the signs.
Contact: Charlotte Scanlan at 804-843-3330 or email@example.com or visit www.west-point.va.us.
Farmers’ markets are country living at its finest. There is no better way to showcase the best of the best than to enjoy markets as our forefathers did many years before us. Whether these markets are new on the block or have several years under their belts, they all seem to share similar goals: to bring the community together for a day of family enjoyment and to offer local goods from local farmers and vendors. In the meantime, what an exciting way to share the offerings of each town and to draw tourists and others from the region into the local economy. With tourist season soon to be in full swing, these local markets are sure to elicit fun, electricity and excitement for locals as well as out-of-town guests. So feel free to travel the region and visit various markets—you will soon understand our way of life and what living on the river is all about. Slow down and have a great day in our neighborhoods!