Smile Politely

Market Watch: May 11, 2013

This Saturday is the second Market of the 2013 season. Last Saturday offered loads of musical talent (I was totally digging the guy dressed in all orange selling CDs). There were slim pickings in the way of produce, but this week the schedule looks to be full of farm vendors. Hooray!

In addition to what looks like a great selection of fresh produce, there will also be candies, honey, pastries, arts, crafts, meats, and breads for sale, fried food to tuck into, and community groups offering stickers, buttons, and informational material.

Hopefully, the Man in Orange will make another appearance. If not, there will be lots of other entertainment, including a FREE Art at the Market workshop offered through the City of Urbana Public Arts Program.

With a ZERO PERCENT CHANCE OF RAIN (I’ll believe it when I see it) and temperatures in the 60s, this Saturday will be a great opportunity to grab some homegrown, organic produce and pick up a last minute present for Mother’s Day. May I suggest some handmade jewelry and a card?

MISSION: Go out and have a good time chatting up farmers, artists, vendors, and local community members as you score some free samples from the tent shaped like a castle (they know that free goodies are the way to my heart). And get your mom (or somebody else’s mom) some fresh flowers while you’re at the Market.

SHOW ME THE MONEY: Remember, credit / debit card tokens are being phased out! LINK card tokens will still be available (details here). You can pay vendors in cash and coins. There is an ATM near the main entrance to the Lincoln Square Mall (next to the gym).

HELP ME: If you have a smart phone, there is a Market map and product search function (new for this year!). You can sign up for weekly updates on Market programming, Market Mail.

If you have a stupid phone, fear not! The information-filled City tent, staffed with friendly helpers, is located at the northwest entrance to the Market, near the Common Ground Food Coop. They have Illinois seasonality charts, water, and Market merch. Remember: if you like it, then you should probably put a bird on it. Disclaimer: may not apply to small children.

PARKING: Free parking is available in the Lincoln Square Mall lot as well as the lot south of Illinois Street. There’s ample bike parking near the entrances to the Mall / Village, and west of the Market. If you have a bike that’s shaped like a car and seats six, I don’t know where you should park it, but COOL I WANT ONE.

IF YOU HAVE MORE QUESTIONS: Check out the Market’s homepage; read the Market blog; follow via Facebook, Twitter, and Google+; check out photos on flickr; email Market Director Natalie Kenny Marquez or give her a call at (217) 384-2319.


What: Urbana Market at the Square
Where: the parking lot of Lincoln Square Mall at the intersection of Illinois and Vine Streets
When: Saturdays through November 2, begins at 7 a.m. and ends at noon, rain or shine (and it looks like 100% chance of shine!)
Why: because the Market puts the BA in Urbana

Next week, my colleague Jillian will be taking over the Market Watch as I move on to the much wetter pastures of Seattle. It’s been real, y’all. Happy farming and marketing!

(Photos: Facebook)

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