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Love is in the air at winter tailgate markets! In fact, a new Valentine’s market has sprung up just for the February fete. We’re talking about the Historic Marion Tailgate’s Valentine Craft Market on Saturday, February 9, and Tuesday, February 12. Expect handcrafted gift items like jewelry and soap along with sweet and savory baked goods for your sweetie (say that five times fast!).

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Last report, we talked about more veggies and more vendors. This report, we’re talking about more markets!

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Last winter, ASAP and Asheville City Market experimented with hosting an indoor winter market at the tailgate’s south location. The result? Fanfare. In fact, it was so well received that Asheville City Market South will operate as an indoor winter market again this year, and Asheville City Market downtown will move indoors for the first time as well.

But our market isn’t alone in staying open during what was once the “off season.” In fact, more winter markets will operate in WNC this year than ever before!

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More veggies and vendors are keeping new winter markets feeling new! Last week, the Neighborhood Y at Woodfin Winter Tailgate Market welcomed Jake’s Farm, as well as eco-friendly cleaning product vendor Shecology (try their laundry soap nuts!). Jake’s Farm will bring their wide variety of produce to Asheville City Market (ACM) downtown beginning this Saturday as well. Speaking of veggies, expect lots of lettuce. At ACM last weekend, Kay Farm’s coolers overflowed with the leafy stuff.

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Last Saturday, Haywood Park Hotel’s atrium began its winter transformation into a local food paradise with the first indoor Asheville City Market. The aroma of Biltmore Coffee Traders’ Sumatran blend filled the corridor, while farmers and artisan food producers dotted the space with all kinds of goodies—we’re talking chicken, chocolate, eggs, lamb, pickles, pork, you name it. Talented area craftspeople were there, too, with bath products for the winter blues, handmade lunch sacks and more.

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Winter farmers tailgate markets are heating up! Saturday marks the second Neighborhood Y at Woodfin Winter Tailgate Market (10 am-12:30 pm), and we hear vendors will move outdoors thanks to the forecast of a near 70-degree day.

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The Neighborhood Y at Woodfin Reynolds Mountain Winter Tailgate Market will kick off the winter market season this Saturday, January 5. (Find a list and schedule of WNC winter markets HERE.) With the new tailgate entering its second season, we asked coordinator Diane Saccone to look back at the market’s first year and to share what’s in store for 2013! 

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