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Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

The new kids on the block at area farmers tailgate markets now are far from wallflowers! A brand new tailgate has started out strong, new produce offerings can’t be missed, and new vendors are joining in and attracting crowds.

Last week, the newly formed Oakley Farmers Market hosted their soft opening; they will celebrate their official grand opening this Thursday with live music, baby goats, and a children’s activity. Vendor Gladheart Farm (also at East Asheville Tailgate Market and Asheville City Market South) offered up some of the very first zucchinis and cucumbers of the season from their high tunnels. Fiddlesticks Farm, in their first year and also vending at the East Asheville Tailgate Market, caught shoppers’ eyes with their not-often-seen French radish; the variety is GIANT for a radish—reaching almost softball size—and very spicy.

Cucumbers and summer squashes can be found from a few other vendors, too, including Jake’s Farm (French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market, Asheville City Market) and Harvest Table Farm (West Asheville Tailgate Market, Black Mountain Tailgate Market). Also look out for early carrots. They’ve been spotted from Earthlife Farm at Asheville City Market, downtown and South. Speaking of summertime veggies, Thatchmore Farm is bringing their greenhouse tomatoes to West Asheville and North Asheville tailgate markets.

Other relatively new veggie arrivals include beets, cauliflower, and mushrooms. Also look for new varieties of spring regulars. Bright purple scallions were spotted from King Harvest Farm last week at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market. These newer veggies join broccoli, garlic scapes, a wide variety of greens, lettuces, sweet onions, and more. Veggie starts are also still abundant, along with flowers and garden and bedding plants. Look for bold bee balm and hostas this week at the Waynesville Tailgate Market.

Beyond produce, look for cheeses, meats, and seafood galore. Also look for baked goods.  Take the Cake: Cupcakes A-Go-Go, a recent competitor on the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars, returns to West Asheville Tailgate Market this week; also find them at Asheville City Market.

Asheville City Market will bustle with activity this Saturday, June 2. ASAP will kick off their weekly summer Kids Corner Market activity series with a fun local food and farm craft project. Chef Nate Allen of Knife and Fork in Spruce Pine will lead a grilling demonstration, and the Master Gardeners will be on hand with an information booth.

To learn more about market events and find a market schedule, visit our online farmers market calendar and browse our online Local Food Guide.

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