I just love wandering around a local farmers market. There is so much to see and do, I find I buy items I had not even thought of before I walked through the gates.
I have learned to be prepared for all kinds of weather and circumstances so as to make the day enjoyable.
In summer I usually take a hat, suncreen blockout, fly and mosquito spray. In winter I always have an umbrella, hat, scarf and gloves.
Handy hints for visiting a farmers market
*** It always pays to take your own carry bags or baskets. Stallholders often do not have these to offer you and it is terrible to have to juggle loose items in your arms as you wander around.
*** Take more than one bag or basket as it is really useful to distribute the weight more evenly.
*** If you buy perishable goods ask the stall holder if you can leave them behind their counter and pick them up just before you leave the market. They will more than likely store them in a cool place. I do this especially if I have bought cheese, pies etc.
*** Be wary of taking sample food from tables at your downtown farmers market if they have been left in the open air. Hands have probably been all over the food as well as flies and wasps.
*** Wear comfortable clothing and shoes as you may be there for quite a while and walking or standing most of the time.
*** I find if I want to buy farmers flowers I need to get them as soon as I arrive as they sell out quickly. If it is very hot I ask the stallholder to keep them in the shade until I am ready to leave.
*** Before you go totally mad buying everything in sight, try and have a quick wander around the whole market to get a general idea of what produce is available.
This way you will be able to shop in a more discerning way - well - probably not if you are like me.
But if you do buy quickly don't be disappointed if you see similar produce further into the market at a cheaper price or better quality.
(I went to a Local Farmers Market only last weekend and bought a beetroot and blueberry relish - WOW, it is fantastic!)
If you have more ideas that can help please get in touch and I can add them to the page.