Norwich Farmers Market: Saturday Mornings, Still
The Norwich Farmers Market has moved indoors, sheltered from the impending winter, to Tracy Hall. Over 40 vendors are selling local seasonal produce: onions, potatoes, carrots, cabbage, wild mushrooms and black walnuts. Breads like focaccia and baguettes, sticky buns. Lamb sausage. Jewelry, and turned bowls by local artist Dustin Coates. A hot lunch on the premises. Cider. You have to scootch past the scrum outside at Salubre Trattoria, selling bakery items that look like cover photos of foodie mags, just to get in the door.
Three Cow Creamery, selling pies, sweet and savory
As at its summer outdoor location, people are there to shop but it is almost beside the point. Unless you're in a hurry, you are inclined to mosey, chat a little with the vendors. "Where do you get your wood?" my former-forester husband inquires of one of the artisans. Me, I am asking another vendor if the sausage is frozen and whether there are different varieties. I see and greet one of my doctors; I bump into no friends there today but find more than a handful of Upper Valley acquaintances. People are talking about Thanksgiving plans.
Daikon radishes, collards, and other veggies from Cedar Circle Farm
It is certainly a self-selected group, and one that wants to shop on a micro, not macro, scale, and close to home. Maybe reducing the carbon footprint is part of it as the vendors are within short driving distances. Localvores love the signs that assure customers that the pork in the pasties comes from pigs raised on the farm of the person selling them to you. You can look them in the eye and ask them outright about humane conditions if you like. And farmers markets are historic. According to the USDA, the first established farmers market in the United States was in 1730 in Lancaster PA. In the past five years or so, the number of farmers markets has doubled; they now number well over 8,000 and are considered significant players in food distribution throughout the country.
Wool yarn, sausage, and an apartment to rent--Savage Hart Farm
Susan B. Apel, author, ArtfulEdge