3 Markets, 3 Days, 3 Locations
Closing of the PT Wednesday Farmers Market, Sept. 14, 2pm to 6pm Polk St.
PT Saturday Farmers Market open to mid-Dec., 9am to 2pm Tyler St.
Chimacum Farmers Market, 10am to 2pm Chimacum Corner Farmstand
Here it comes! This is a big week for local farms. Today is Closing Day of the Port Townsend Wednesday Farmers Market season on Polk Street from 2pm to 6pm. This Saturday the Port Townsend Farmers Market hosts a Tomato Taste Off from 9am to 2pm on Tyler Street and our partner, Washington State University Extension, hosts Farm Tour. Also, the Chimacum Farmers Market is open Sunday from 10am to 2pm at the Chimacum Corner Farmstand.
In addition to our fabulous farmers, Crust Bakery, Chimacum Valley Dairy and Pane d’Amore Bakery will be at Closing Day of the PT Wednesday Farmers Market. The Possum Carvers and Glutton Free Loafers will play live music from 2pm to 6pm. We hope to see you at the farewell market.
When I announce a market season closing I find that folks think all three of our markets are closing for the season. Nope. The PT Saturday Farmers Market and Chimacum Farmers Market are open until mid-December and the end of October, respectively.
Are you ready for the Tomato Taste Off and Farm Tour all in one weekend? On September 17th, the PT Saturday Farmers Market will host the Tomato Taste Off starting at 9am on Tyler Street. Here is the event schedule:
- 9am to 2pm: Delicious food for sale by prepared food vendors featuring local tomatoes
- 9:30am-11am: Sample and judge local tomato varieties based on sweetness, tomatoey-ness, ugliness and texture
- 10:30am to 11:30am: Chef demo by Arran Stark featuring local tomatoes
- 11:30am to 12pm: Seed saving presentation by the Organic Seed Alliance (OSA)
- 12pm to 1:45pm: Vocal and accordion music by the talented Maray Fuego
Special dishes to look forward to from our prepared food vendors include: paella with tomatoes from Sunfield Farm by Paella House; gazpacho by the Spot Café; roasted tomato basil ice cream and tomato sorbetto by Fiddlehead Creamery (they are back at market this weekend!); basil and mozzarella croissants by Sweet Lamb Baking Company with tomatoes from Onatrue Farm; Bob's bagel sandwiches with goat cheese, tomatoes and greens as well as bagel burgers on cheddar/pickle bagels with pecan sausage, maple dijon dressing, tomatoes and greens from SpringRain and Finnriver Farm; Crust tomato basil hand pie, ratatouille hand pie and smokey eggplant tart with fresh tomatoes, herbs and veggies from SpringRain, Red Dog, Midori, Onatrue and Finnriver farms as well as fromage blanc from Mt. Townsend creamery.
Some of the tomato varieties available for sampling include: Esterian yellow cherry grown by Finnriver Farm, Striped Brandywine grown by SpringRain Farm, Max's Mystery Tomato grown by Onatrue Farm, Big Beef grown by Red Dog Farm and Katja and Brazilian Beauty grown by Nash's Farm. Market Director, Amanda Milholland, may throw in some of her home grown tomatoes and OSA will also add a variety or two. Mmmm!
From 11:30am to noon Laurie McKenzie of OSA will present tomato seed saving methods and speak about their national work trialing tomato seed. The Pot Townsend-based non-profit advances the ethical development and stewardship of seed as part of our common cultural heritage. They have a 13-year track record as the leading organic seed institution in the United States. Each year they educate thousands of farmers and other agricultural community members, conduct organic plant breeding and seed production research, and advocate for national policies that strengthen organic seed systems.
Farm Tour is this weekend. The event kicks off with a fundraising Honky Tonkin' Pie Partywith Three Chords and the Truth at the Chimacum Grange from 6pm to 10pm. This is an all ages, free event. Join the party for an opportunity to win a locally made pie at the pie walk or participate in the pie-eating contest. Slices of pie and locally made beer, wine and cider are also available for sale in support of Farm Tour.
On Saturday and Sunday, September 17th and 18th, visit some of our local farms, including farms that participate in the Port Townsend and Chimacum Farmers Markets. This year, a total of 13 farms are taking part in Farm Tour, including our very own SpringRain, Onatrue and Finnriver Farms. Learn more here.
What a fun and full week. See you at the market! ~ Amanda
P.S. I spoke too soon in our last newsletter about the end of strawberry season. We still got 'em. SpringRain Farm will have strawberries until first frost and Onatrue and Red Dog farms have a week or two more of berries.
My first impression when I visited Gatheringplace last Friday was of the warmth and smell of baking bread. Actually, about 15 adults with and without disabilities were gathered at the Skookum facility by the Port Townsend Boat Haven happily engaged in cutting, decorating, packaging and baking organic dog biscuits. Adults with developmental and other disabilities were working side-by-side with volunteers and a small number of part-time staff, all of whom were smiling. Folks were joking with each other and sharing their decoration accomplishments with pride.
Gatheringpace, a non-profit organization, has been bringing folks with developmental disabilities (DD) and other community members together since 1994. Megan Ferris, a small red-headed gal full of love and hugs, inspired the creation of this supportive group. She is the daughter of Port Townsend residents, Linda and Bob Ferris. Megan graduated from the Port Townsend High School Special Education program in 1994, the same year that Linda and Bob formed Gatheringplace.
In the beginning, Gatheringplace was made up of a small group of adults with DD and their families who met weekly in each other’s homes. The group saw that Gatheringplace filled a need shared by many people in Jefferson County for daytime activities that engage adults with DD. Like Megan, other individuals with DD were longing for social, work and recreational opportunities after high school. As a result, the Life Skills component of Gatheringplace was created in 1996. Today, with only a handful of part-time staff and a generous number of volunteers, Gatheringplace empowers more than 30 individuals with DD through cooking and movement classes, art activities and dog biscuit production.
Each and every individual who comes through the doors at Gatheringplace is respected for who they are and the gifts they have to share. You can see this when you visit Gatheringplace. Participants and volunteers expressed to me their thankfulness for the ways in which Gatherinplace enriches and supports the skill development of participants. One participant, Jessie, told me, “It’s fun.” Gatheringplace is many things, a place for people to be themselves, learn, create and gather. Most of all, it is fun.
Gatheringplace is a unique vendor to the PT Saturday Farmers Market. For the past 13 years, they have participated weekly in the market as a non-profit vendor. Unlike most non-profits, Gatheringplace is entirely funded by private individual donations and product sales. They produce an annual calendar with artwork by local artists. Profits from calendar sales make up the bulk of the organization’s operational budget. Gatheirngplace participants and volunteers also sell hand-made dog biscuits, hand puppets and stuffed animals at the PT Saturday Farmers Market. The stuffed animals and puppets utilize reclaimed materials. Visit Gatheringplace in the middle row of the PT Saturday Farmers Market by the intersections of Clay and Tyler Streets and pick up a 2017 calendar while you're at it.
From Our Vendors
Nash’s beautiful bunch carrots are their veggie of the week!! Nash’s famous carrots make an excellent back to school snack, delicious carrot cake and are a flavorful addition to fall muffin recipes. Try them grated into a green salad…the list goes on! If you haven’t tried Nash's carrots, this is a great week to pick up a bunch. In addition, they have 5 lb carrot bags, table carrots and 15 lb bags of juice carrots all for a great price. Other goodies coming out of the field include: red and green Savoy cabbage, arugula, spinach, chard, kale, red onions, leeks, celery, flat and curly parsley, bunch and bulk beets, and a few more of those delicious lemon cucumbers.
Chimacum Valley Dairy will be at the PT Wednesday Polk Street Farmers Market with their Farmstead Raw aged goat's milk cheese and their Raw aged cow's milk cheese, West Valley Wheel with Herbs d'Provenance. Wednesday is your only chance this week to get Chimacum Valley Dairy cheese. They will not be at market on Saturday.
Red Dog is bringing sweet corn, celery, leeks and shelling beans this week. These new items, along with our other offerings, beg to be made into delicious, hearty soups. If you’re feeling summery, we still have an abundance of strawberries, tomatoes and other summer fare.