Monday, May 30, 2016

Farmer's Markets Open this Week

There are many places to buy fresh produce in Milwaukee, but none better than a local farmer's market in a park.  Though it's still early in the growing season, you will find some things for sale now and even more as the summer progresses.  Many have entertainment and the added benefit of playground equipment for the kids.  It's always a good idea to bring cash and a reusable bag, though a few of the parks now have ATMs in the beer gardens and vendors often have plastic bags.

On Milwaukee put out a regional guide, which includes those outside of the Milwaukee area. I'll highlight a few here that are just too good to miss.  Miltown Moms has a guide too, with just a few differences.

South Shore Park has a beer garden, ATM, gorgeous views of downtown Milwaukee across the lake, sand pit, a playground, little free library, live music, and exercise equipment so when you've exhausted your shopping list, you can settle in for more fun. Be sure to walk to the north end of the park to see the oldest copper beech tree. Eddee Daniel in his Urban Wilderness blog writes more about this tree and other beautiful large trees in our parks. I've written before about how this is my favorite place to be on a Saturday morning.  Hope you give it a try this summer.
Check out the Beer Garden for food and drinks

View of Milwaukee from South Shore Park

Westown Farmers Market is at Zeidler Union Square on Wednesdays and serves the working downtown population, but that doesn't mean it isn't for you on your lunch break or a day away from work.  I wrote more about this market in detail last year on my blog. I love the food trucks and Kettle Korn Cowboy. Cowboy Doug appears at several markets and you can look at the schedule on his website for details.
Kettle Korn Cowboy

Riverwest Gardeners Market is one of the few you'll find on a Sunday.  They have updated the blog to reflect the 2016 season.  Check it out to see who you might find.  Though it's small, it has some great vendors. I usually come away with gorgeous flowers, some delicious salsa, and fresh greens at this one. They also feature live music.

East Town's Cathedral Square Farmer's Market includes a 9:00 yoga session, set in downtown Cathedral Square. With more than 100 vendors, you're guaranteed to find something you'll decidedly need for the coming week, along with lots of great locally made gift ideas. There's live music starting at 10:15.  It's easy to find ATMs on the surrounding blocks.  For even more fun, catch a ride on the trolley which begins at 11 am and stops here. It only costs $1 and runs all day in a loop until 9 PM, Thursday through Saturday.

Jackson Park is only on its second year, but this is a beautiful park with a lagoon.  The market will be set up in tents near the boathouse on Thursdays, 3:30-7, which is great for stopping by after picking up the kids after school or on your way home from work. Better yet, bring the entire family and make a picnic of it.  There are prepared foods for sale too.  

Walker's Square is a small park in one of our diverse neighborhoods. Open Thursday and Sunday from 7:30 until 3, you'll find fresh produce, free wifi, a wading pool, very nice playground and large shade trees.
Wading pool in Walker's Square Park

Go to the top of the Clock Shadow building- maybe you know there's a cheese factory on the lower floor here- for the monthly AgriCULTURE Market. This isn't really a park, but it's such a cool space with great views of the Hoan Bridge and lakefront, that you should go there at least once.  For up to date information, look at the AgriCULTURE Market Facebook page. These take place on the third Thursday of the month through September, 4-8 PM. Expect Live music, storytelling, and fresh produce.

Hope this has inspired you to get outdoors to do some shopping this summer!
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