Smile Politely

Market Watch: Is that a pumpkin in your truck?

Last week, upon entering the Market, we were faced with a trailer truck loaded up with huge, bright orange orbs  — pumpkins, and not itty bitty pie pumpkins, either. Nope, these were jack o’lanterns, people, sharing truck space with the sweet corn. During a season where summer rarely made its presence felt, it was totally weird to be confronted with full-on symbols of autumn’s approach.

However —

There are two Markets left before the Autumnal Equinox (it falls on Monday, September 21 this year), so it’s still TOTALLY summer. This weekend’s weather is even going to cooperate while you come in to shop for your fresh produce. What’s still available, you ask? Here’s a list (incomplete, I’m sure):

apples, basil, beets, bok choy, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, chard, cilantro, cucumbers, edamame, eggplant, fresh herbs, garlic, green beans, green onions, kale, leeks, lettuce, melons, nectarines, okra, parsley, peaches, pears, peppers, pumpkins, raspberries, salad mix, spinach, sprouts, summer squash, sweet corn, tomatoes, turnips, zucchini.

Not bad for this time of year, and all of it fresh and local, fresh and local, fresh and local.

A word about the tomatoes: The Blight is here, so you might want to stock up on tomatoes over the next few weeks and start preparing yourself mentally for an earlyish end to the season. We’ve enjoyed lots of variety with the new heirlooms introduced by our growers, but The Blight is cruel and it’s looking like it’s making its way through our part of the country.

One note about activities at this week’s Market  — Urbana’s Public Arts Program is back with Art at the Market from 8 a.m. – noon this weekend. It’s free and open to patrons of all ages, with a freestylin’ theme this time around. Come get your art on with Program Coordinator Anna Hochhalter – contact her at 384-2311 or for more information.

Next weekend: Soccer at the Square with Coach Janet Rayfield’s nationally-ranked U of I soccer squad. This’ll be a chance for everyone to meet Coach Rayfield and her team, grab some giveaways, AND show the team their mad soccer skillz — don’t miss it!


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