When I moved to Corcoran neighborhood seven years ago there were many treasures I appreciated in the area, and one of the treasures was the Midtown Farmer’s Market. Besides the convenience of being able to roll out of bed on a Saturday morning and roll straight down to the market to pick up fresh produce, meats, and baked goods, you can also eat a great breakfast while browsing the unique creations of local artisans or listening to a local music group.
This past season at the market I had the opportunity to experience the market from another perspective: as a vendor at the market. It was a no-brainer for me to apply for a vendor spot at the Midtown Farmer’s Market this past year once I had started my company making jams and jellies, Jamazing! It was at my house in Corcoran that I started creating my jams and jellies for friends, family, and fellow church members, and later that I worked on my entries for the Minnesota State Fair Creative Activities canning competition, where I earned two blue ribbons in 2012 and two blue ribbons this past summer. When considering markets for this summer, I wanted most to be at the market in my own neighborhood, the Midtown Farmer’s Market.
As a vendor I came to appreciate so much more about the market than what “meets the eye” as a patron, such as the market management. Market staff members Miguel and Elizabeth start early in the morning setting up the info booth tents, tables and chairs, and stages for music, and make sure all of the vendors know where to go. Throughout the market they ensure the market goes smoothly and the Friends of the Market help out wherever needed.
As a vendor at the market I also came to appreciate the work put in by all of the other vendors. As a patron, I never thought much about what it takes for the vendors to be there week in and week out and how much effort they put into providing patrons with the best produce, baking the most beautiful-looking breads and pastries, perfecting their artistic creations or crafts, or preparing food for patrons right on the spot.
Most of all, after being a vendor at the market, I came to appreciate the patrons of the Midtown Farmer’s Market. The customers, more than anything, are what make the Midtown Farmer’s Market the “place” that it is. It would not have the charm and the atmosphere it has if it wasn’t for the customers that come week-by-week. There are those that stop by each week just to say “hi” or to ask how things are going for the vendors. Even on one of the last weeks, there were those that came through and thanked every vendor for being part of the market and wishing them well until they see them next season.
We truly have a great thing, Corcoran, in the Midtown Farmer’s Market. After a season of being a vendor at the market, I appreciate it even more and I can’t wait for next season at the market once we get through another Minnesota winter and can come back to the market to walk around the beautiful produce, scrumptious pastries, and the artisan’s newest creations. See you in 2014, Corcoran!