Farmers’ Market opens Sunday

Kersty Daniels, left, the farmers’ market new manager, stands

It’s that time of year again.

April showers bring May… farmers’ markets!

Now in its second year, the Gilroy Farmers’ Market will pick up again May 13 in its original spot, located in the parking lot of the Gilroy Interim Center for the Arts on the corner of Monterey and Seventh streets. Locals can once again stock up on fresh-grown goodness from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Sunday through Oct. 28.

With added insight and a fresh crop of ideas, the market is led this year by manager Kersty Daniels, a Gilroyan who also serves on the leadership committee for the Gilroy Demonstration Garden.

“I’m really excited that we have last year’s vendors coming back and new vendors to add,” said Daniels, who pointed out this year’s offerings have expanded by 20 to 25 percent.

While market volunteers will continue to promote eating with the seasons, buying local and educating the public about organic gardening, the market will be open this year to vendors touting organic as well as non-organic produce.

Patrons who qualify for CalFresh – a government program that provides temporary financial assistance to low-income families – will also be able to use food stamps to purchase quality groceries from the market.

“Having CalFresh touches on our mission statement to bring local and healthy foods to people who might not otherwise have an opportunity,” noted Daniels. “That’s really big.”

Daniels plans on facilitating regular monthly events, including a children’s day the first Sunday of every month beginning in June, along with periodic themed markets such as a Mother’s Day celebration May 13, a Father’s Day celebration June 17, “Fun with garlic” on July 8 in addition to “nonprofit,” “health” and “harvest” themed markets down the road.

Weekly musical entertainment is also in the pipeline, with talent such as guitarist Russ Cox, a jazz group Trio of Light, country guitarist/vocalist Andy Johnson (of Gilroy’s Patty Kistner Band) and local acoustic guitarist/vocalist Tim Moon.

Vendor fees will be the same as last year, with a one-time application fee of $35, followed by a $25 fee for a 10-by-10 foot space, or $35 for a 20-by-25 foot space per market day. Vendors receive a discount if they pay up front for the entire season. Any vendors interested in selling their goods at the market should contact Market Manger Kersty Daniels at 408-206-6189.

“I’m really hoping that Gilroy comes out and supports the Farmers’ Market,” said Daniels. “They’ve wanted it, so here we are. I’m excited about people coming out and having a good time.”

Want to help out?

Community volunteers, or high school students looking to fulfill those 80 hours of community service hours required for graduation, are welcome to help out with the setting up and/or breaking down of the market each week. Three to four volunteers are needed to help set up the market from 8 to 10 a.m., in addition to three to four volunteers who can help break things down from 2 to 3 p.m. on Sundays. For more information about getting involved, call Market Manager Kersty Daniels at 408-206-6189.

2012 Gilroy Farmers’ Market Vendors
Fresh produce

  • Heirloom Organics: Lettuce and root vegetables
  • Live Earth Farm: Mixed and seasonal vegetables
  • Mirmonte Farmers: Mixed and seasonal vegetables
  • Frog Hollow: Stone fruit and jams
  • VanDyke Ranch: Organic fresh and dried fruit
  • Raul Muaillo & Son: Variety of vegetables
  • Oya Organics: Mixed and seasonal vegetables
  • Dean Moon: Eggs
  • Vasquez Farm: Strawberries
  • El Camino Packing: Cherries, seasonal fruit

Ready to eat food

  • Gold Rush Kettle Korn
  • No Way Jose: Mexican and Cajun food
  • Silva Sausage: Sausage sandwiches
  • Rebekkah’s Culinary Academy: Baked goods
  • Hummus Heaven: Artisan hummus dips, pita bread, pita chips, olives
  • Dragonfly coffee: Local brews from Gilroy’s downtown coffee roasters
  • Locally made caramel apples

Retail

  • Gilroy Flower Shop: Fresh cut flowers
  • Bell Hill Farms: Goat milk soaps and lotions
  • Louise Sheilds: Artist
  • Tracy’s Jewelry
  • Local antique dealers
  • CNM crafts: Handmade aprons, 831 637 7656
  • Uvas Gold Apiaries: Local Gilroy honey
  • Terry H: Face painter
  • Manzanita Magic: Beautiful Manzanita jewelry made in Morgan Hill
  • Brownell Middle School Community Garden: Handcrafted bird houses

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