Guest post by Kimberly Kenedy
On any Saturday morning from the beginning of April until the end of October, a little parking lot in the middle of Midland, Texas springs to life with a bustle of sights, smells, and people. At 8:30 a.m. 501 W. Texas Ave. transforms into the Midland Downtown Farmers’ Market, a place created to bring together the local farmers and a community clamoring for local food. More and more people are turning away from heavily processed supermarket offerings, and are returning to simpler foods that were grown by people they recognize and have a friendship with. Consumers today are looking for foods that have not been trucked in from miles away, foods that were not picked before they were ripe just so they could make the trip, and food that isn’t grown from seeds that are created with insecticides built into the plant. That is what the Midland Downtown Farmers’ Market offers to the growing community of food lovers.
Year-round local farmers bring out their harvest, food artisans bring their tasty creations, and crafters bring their wares, and on Saturday mornings the public is treated to fresh- baked homemade breads, homemade jams and jellies, locally-produced salsas, organic spices, artisan-crafted goat cheese, homemade pies and more. Ethnic offerings from Russian butter braid, flour tortillas, and a mobile wood burning oven turning out fresh pizzas– greet the strolling public. This delicious array of food is peppered with a select few booths offering non-food and craft items, handmade soaps for those wishing to escape the grip of the chemical-laden bars at the supermarket, and homemade all-natural pet treats that are safe and healthy for your animals.
All these products sold by vendors who have become friends with the residents that come out to visit the market. That is what makes farmers’ markets so special – you get to know the people who you are buying your food from, you have a personal connection with that grower/producer and you don’t have to wonder about where it came from or what it has in it because you can actually ask the person who made it.