I love going to the farmer’s market in the recreation park of Manchester, Vermont. I see people I know, have a chance to talk with farmers about their crops and animals, and am surrounded by youth and life. Kids do crafts in a sprawling tent area, while local musicians provide a cheerful backdrop.
More than anything, farmers markets raise the value of a community. People attend and have a chance to see just how many amazing things exist in their local towns. I never knew there were so many musicians and talented bread bakers in my area. Between Rupert Rising Bread, the Battenkill Bread company, and Granny Om Bakery in Shushan, NY, I can buy freshly made bread from any of these companies within a 30 minute radius of our rural home.
I love the chance to chat with farmers about how they raised the chicken that is now a frozen mass of meat in my bag, or with another about his wide variety of heirloom tomatoes. I have never felt so connected with my food. When I put food into my body there is a deeper sense of relationship and significance. I’m no longer just suffocating hunger pain, I’m fueling my body with good, local food.
Today is the last day of the Manchester market, but the Sunday afternoon market in Dorset, VT continues throughout the winter at the J. K. Adams kitchen store. Many of the same vendors will be on hand, and so the community sticks it out together through the winter.