SUGAR SNAPS & SOCIALIZING AT THE MARKET
I was looking for an old email from farmer Matt Soldano of Southtown Farms late last night, and I stumbled across Matt’s blog from early June about why he (and other farmers) love farmer’s markets. It really touched a chord, particularly on the heels of last Saturday when I had the pleasure of spending the day at the Chappaqua Farmer’s Market and watching all the socializing going on there…not just among New Castle residents chatting each other up in the fish or pretzel line, but between vendors and shoppers. It seems everyone knows the epically-bearded-Brian, who sells for Taiim, by name. Just as they know the names and temperaments of Betsy Rich‘s two mammoth-sized Pyrenees (Mojo and Sam )at the brownie tent.
For me, the markets have always been an oasis of community in the sometimes alienating suburbs. Good bread, fresh produce – yes – but also healthy conversation, community spirit and a sense of daily life unraveling before your eyes.
I was so glad that Matt feels the same way:
“Farmers are not a very social group,” writes Soldano. “Not by choice, but because of our profession. When you’re up at 0500 and working in the sun all day, the last thing you want to do is head out to meet friends that evening. Come weekends the days get even longer as we get up even earlier to pack for market, and still get all our farm chores done. There’s no time for a social life in the summer. That’s where markets come in. They are our social place, our gathering point. Farmers markets are where like-minded individuals can all come together for a few hours learn and laugh about life. ”
Adds Soldano: “Anthropologists will tell you that human beings always belonged in tribes. I think this is very true. My tribe is made up of farmers and customers that I get to chat with each week. Every market day, I go home with a smile on my face. Not for the sales we make, but for the community we have built and the relationships we have forged.”
This week, the official kick-off of grilling season, Matt will be bringing plenty of grass-fed beef, his first batch of the season. Make sure to to pick some up at the Southtown Farms tent – and, maybe even linger a while.
In case you missed them last week – the cherries are in – a bit early this year. Snap some up early in the day. Oh – sugar snaps are here, too. Continue reading Pascale’s Blog – June 25, 2015