Smile Politely

Market Watch: July 12th, 2014

There is a lot happening at the market this week! This week the market will feature some fun events, live music, and sweet corn. Art at the Market returns with a Makerspace Urbana sponsored workshop from 8 a.m. to noon about how to make a reusable tote bag out of a t-shirt. This fun and free event is open to the public. All supplies will be provided, so market goers can pick a shirt and the workshop will explain how to convert it into a convenient way to haul all your market goodies. To learn more about this event, visit the Art at the Market website.

Art at the Market will also feature the Aduki jazz quartet this weekend. This local Bloomington quartet is known for their covers of 60s bluenote jazz, as well as original compositions in the same genre. While the name of the quartet might be an elaborate poop joke, the jazz stylings of the group are definitely worth a listen. Learn more about the Aduki Quartet here. And if all that wasn’t enough to get you to the market, there will also be a blood drive on site this weekend. Look for the bloodmobile to donate on the spot, or schedule a time in advance through Community Blood Service’s website. Summer is a time of high need for blood donations, so if you are able please consider helping out your community — you’ll even get a cookie and some juice! To learn more about donating blood, visit the Community Blood Services website.

There is one additional event this weekend that is especially great for the local community. The Eastern Illinois Foodbank will be at the market to kick off the Farm to Foodbank program. This wonderful program provides a way for market vendors to donate excess fresh local produce to the Eastern Illinois Foodbank directly at the market. Market patrons are also able to help out this week by participating in the Buy Two, Donate One program. Buy Two, Donate One asks market patrons to buy two of something from the market and donate one to the food pantry directly at the market. There will be a tent next to the city tent on the northwest corner of the market where donations can be dropped off. Local food pantries often struggle to provide fresh produce to those in need, so this program helps those who visit the food pantries to get local produce for their families. Twenty-two percent of Illinois children live in poverty and face food insecurity, so the Farm to Foodbank program really does make a big difference. The Eastern Illinois Foodbank serves over 200 local food pantries in a 14-county area, so if you are able this is a great way to support the local community by doing something very easy and convenient! If you would like to learn more about the Farm to Foodbank program or the Buy Two, Donate One program, please visit here

The produce forecast for this week looks spectacular. Sweet corn has finally come into season. All the miles of local corn fields we’ve been seeing getting taller and taller finally will translate into a delicious addition to any summer meal. Blueberries will also be available for purchase, as well as cherries, peaches, and maybe even watermelon. Tomatoes are also coming into season, as well as zucchini, sweet peas and potatoes. If you haven’t had new potatoes straight from the ground, it is a such a difference from potatoes trucked in from other places. They are great steamed or baked with a little bit of butter and some salt. This time of the year, there is so much to choose from at the market that you really won’t be disappointed. 

July is also a great time to try out some of the prepared food items at the market like goat milk gelato, home baked goods, and jams to avoid having to heat up our own kitchen. The flowers at the market are finally in full bloom as well. I saw lots of huge sunflower bouquets and many other kinds of cut flowers to choose from if you are looking for a bouquet or potted plant for your yard. 

Forms of payment: All vendors accept cash, and a few may take checks. There is an ATM in the Lincoln Square Mall just in case you buy so much you need a few more bucks. LINK card tokens are still available.  See information about LINK here.

Parking: Parking is available in the parking lots surrounding Lincoln Square Mall and the lot south of Illinois Street for FREE! Bike parking is also available at the entrances to the mall and at the bike corral area past the entrance to the Market off of Illinois.

Information: The market provides a lot of ways to get information.  You can follow the Market on Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for market mail here. There is a map of the vendors here. If you want more information you can email Market Director Natalie Kenny Marquez ,or call her at 217.384.2319. Check out flickr for some great photos from the market each week. The market also has Instagram: you can follow the feed here.

Pets: The market doesn’t allow pets, so leave your furry friends at home. But there are plenty of places to pick up a special treat for your pet at the market so they don’t feel left out.

The Market runs from 7 a.m. to noon every Saturday through November 1st. All events are scheduled rain or shine.

Related Articles