Over the past three months, vendors at the Berea Farmers Market have sold more than $30,000 of fresh local fruits and vegetables, eggs, meats, breads, arts and crafts, said Therese Hildebrand, market manager. “This is cause for celebration.”
On Sept. 15, the Live Large Live Local community festival is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at their location on Estill Street in front of St. Joseph Berea.
A buffet-style lunch will be served, created with fresh goods from local farmers and prepared by three of Berea’s local restaurants, Main Street Cafe, The Blackfeather Cafe and Berea Coffee and Tea, Hildebrand said.
Chicken, stuffed vegetables, a variety of side dishes and sorghum sweet tea is on the menu, she said, along with some vegetarian options.
The festival will feature speakers and information about building strong local economies. Activities for children — pony rides, an obstacle course and a dinosaur cave — are scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Market farmers also will participate in a sack race during the event.
Activities are free, but lunch ticket prices are $8 (individual), $15 (couple), $25 (family of four) and children under two are free. Tickets may be purchased during market hours Tuesdays 3:30-6:00 p.m. and Saturdays 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. in front of the hospital.
“These farmers work very hard and we want to celebrate that,” Hildebrand said. “If you think about it, that much food is not having to travel across the country to make it to your dinner table.”
The number of vendors and customers seem to have grown this year, she said. Although she thinks this is the first time vendors have compiled their profit totals since the market began in 1972.
More than 20 vendors are regulars at the market. While many of them sell locally grown fruits and vegetables, the market offers a wide range of products, such as: Baked goods, granola, flowers, beef, pork, chicken, turkey, baskets, art, natural soaps and body lotions.
The market is always looking for more vendors, Hildebrand said. Potential vendors may access it online at bereafarmersmarket.org.
Membership is open to persons who grow and produce their own consumable products and artisans who produce unique work, according to their website.
Once a vendor is approved by the board, membership for the entire season is $60, or $10 per visit (until $60 is reached).
For details, visit bereafarmersmarket.org or call Therese Hildebrand at (859) 302-6424.
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