SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - The Spokane Valley Farmers Market is going to be a great place to be on Friday nights for dates this summer, with food trucks and live music each week. For getting your groceries to make delicious, fresh meals to enjoy outside with friends. And for the family. Parents can shop while kids can play on the adjacent Discovery playground.
The market itself will be situated in the CenterPlace parking lot, situated right between the Spokane Valley YMCA and the Spokane Valley Mall at 2426 North Discovery Place. It will take place Fridays from 5pm to 8pm through mid-September. There will be 35 vendors, a third of whom live and work in the area, like Ben Alexander.
“I grew up here playing Frisbee in the back,” shared the owner of New Heritage Farm when talking about his backyard gardens.
On the ground where he used to play as a boy, Ben and his wife Rauha now gather veggies each morning. Wanting to help develop a healthy and sustainable food system, they are sharing with others.
He explained, “Spokane Valley was founded on small farms just as you see here and so to be able to tie back to that heritage, that the Valley was really founded upon, is something we are most excited about.”
The JAKT Foundation is behind the farmers market, a non-profit trying to broaden the culinary scene in Spokane Valley. The heightened interest in local food is the exact reason farmer Brandon Gerard moved back to the Valley a few years ago.
The Peak of Abundance farm owner works full-time for a local food company that helps bring farmers and businesses together. The rest of his time growing his 1-acre property. This will be his first time selling his own produce though and he could not be more excited.
He explained, “I had actually been inquiring about a Spokane Valley Farmer's Market through the City of Spokane Valley and they kind of hooked me up with the folks who were working on the early stages.”
It's also Makana Farms first time at market. Owners Joy and Jeff Hendrickson will be pulling double duty this summer. The couple who used to run an organic farm in Hawaii heard the amount of vendors looking to snag booths was high, so they also signed up for the Liberty Lake Farmers Market. They'll be at both which works out for the Hendricksons – more opportunities to chat with customers, his favorite thing about farmers markets!
Jeff added, “I love the social aspect of it. I think there is a part of – if you are a customer, there is that synergy between the producer and consumer.”
Jeff encourages attendees to chat with farmers at the market, to learn about where your purchases are coming from. At most stands produce was farmed just a few miles away, something that doesn't always happen at the supermarket.
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