A Day At The Market

By Joel DeVyldere

A blast of color marks early autumn at the Lane County Farmers Market, where hundreds of people are loading up their bags with all colors of healthy produce and prepared foods.

Every Saturday spring through fall, the market spans three square blocks of downtown Eugene. Here you’ll find local farmers selling their produce, local musicians making sweet autumn music, and local artisans hawking their handmade clothing and crafts. Check out a few of the sights to be seen:

Certified organic produce from Grateful Harvest Farm
Certified organic produce from Grateful Harvest Farm, photo copyright Jonathan Lange

Saturday at Lane County Farmers Market
The market is a major downtown destination on Saturdays. Not just restricted to buying and selling, these blocks often function as a meet-up location and a place to just kick back and listen to some free live music. photo copyright Jonathan Lange

Farmer Paul Toups by pickup truck
Local farmer Paul Toups sells corn and pumpkins to a steady stream of loyal customers. Paul has been selling at the Lane County Farmers Market for 33 years.
photo copyright Jonathan Lange

Farmer Bob Skinner of Alsea Acre Goat Farm
Bob Skinner sells cheese uniquely made at Alsea Acre Goat Farm. Bob’s cousin Nancy heads up a small crew that cares for the goats and makes the cheese.
photo copyright Jonathan Lange

Rainbow chard at Farmers Market
A booth at the market selling rainbow chard. Chard is a cousin of the beet often grown for its broad and tasty leaves. It is sometimes used as an alternative to lettuce and spinach. photo copyright Jonathan Lange

As you can see, there’s a lot going on. Here are a couple of tips to make the most out of your Saturday Market experience:

Slow down

A lot of farmers are more than willing to talk about their farms and all the creative methods they have used to stay in the business. You might make friends.

Shop around

Some of the produce sold here is really expensive and some is much less expensive. Check around for good prices, and make sure you ask for a taste test if you’re buying a lot of something.

If you have a SNAP card, bring it

Lane County Farmer’s Market now accepts SNAP cards (formerly called food stamps). Use your card to pick up something really healthy to bring home. WIC vouchers are also accepted at many of the booths.

Drink the lemonade

Saturday Market is about more than just groceries. Be sure you make the rounds and meet local authors, musicians, craftsmen, and prepared food vendors. I can tell you from personal experience that the berry lemonade is a worthwhile buy.

Not in Eugene?

Check out these lists with details of other farmers markets in
United States
Farmers Markets (you can search by your zip code)

California
Certified Farmers Markets

Oregon Farmers’ Markets
Washington Farmers Markets

Lane County Farmer’s Market

April through December:

Saturdays
8th and Oak (Downtown)
9:00 am to 3:00 pm

Tuesdays
8th and Oak (Downtown)
10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Thursdays
28th & Hilyard Street (next to the Amazon Community Center)
2:00 pm to 6:00 pm

For details on January through March Farmers Market dates and for the special Holiday Market at the Fairgrounds in November and December check the Lane County Farmers Market website.

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