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Turners Falls Farmers Market returns

  • Hannah Sol and Joe Connelly, of Everyday Farm in Gill, talk with Tom Ashley at their stand at the Great Falls Farmers Market in Turners Falls last Wednesday afternoon. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • The Great Falls Farmers Market on Wednesday afternoon in Turners Falls, May 23, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • The Great Falls Farmers Market on Wednesday afternoon in Turners Falls, May 23, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Vendor Elisha Poulin, of Wendell, sets up shop at the Great Falls Farmers Market on Wednesday afternoon in Turners Falls, May 23, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little

  • Organic "Happy Chicken Eggs" for sale by vendor Elisha Poulin, of Wendell, at the Great Falls Farmers Market on Wednesday afternoon in Turners Falls, May 23, 2018. Recorder Staff/Dan Little



Recorder Staff
Sunday, May 27, 2018

TURNERS FALLS — Summer has officially arrived, at least in Turners Falls.

It’s not the bright green foliage-covered hills rising over the Connecticut River, or the kayakers paddling around Barton Cove, or even residents walking around in shorts and tank tops. It’s the Turners Falls Farmers Market, which sets up shop once a week as an open-air fresh produce market from May to October.

Those looking for some fresh veggies to go with a home-grilled steak, some flowers to brighten up the porch or even some local honey or herbs need look no further.

The market sets up shop Wednesdays from 2 to 6 p.m. near the Great Falls Discovery Center off Avenue A. Some vendors participate nearly every week, while others attend as they have produce to sell.

Vendors accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Electronic Balance Transfer (EBT) cards, which are federally funded payment options to help those who may struggle to feed themselves or their family.

Elisha Poulin of Wendell plans to be at the market all summer. She stood under a booth shaded by a tree and happily advertised “Organic Happy Chicken Eggs” of all assorted colors, even blue and green.

“Fed apple cider vinegar and lots of herbs. They are loved every day,” said the sign.

In addition to fresh eggs, she sells local herbal-infused honey, tea leaves, herbal-infused raw chocolate and other local items. She describes her stand as “a little bit of cooperative vending.”

“A lot of people have something they want to sell but they can’t set up their own stand,” she said.

Donna Francis, market manager since 2013, sat at a table selling her home-grown rhubarb. She also distributed fliers for the market and had information about purchasing produce with SNAP and EBT benefits. She’s excited for another year at the market.

“It’s a source of locally grown, fresh produce and a community event,” she said. “You can come and see neighbors and enjoy — usually — good weather.”

For this year and years to come, Francis strives to get more locally grown and locally made items to showcase all that Franklin County has to offer.

She pointed out a few new vendors for the year, including a Reiki tent. Reiki, lately growing in popularity, is a Japanese stress-reduction and relaxation technique that is administered with light touches to specific parts to the body.

In the last week of May, she expects Guatemalans from Catholic Social Ministries to offer fresh tamales.

The market has a Facebook page, so visitors can see which vendors may attend each week. Francis encourages people to reach out to her at greatfallsfarmersmarketturners@gmail.com if they would like to vend or even provide live music for the market.

“It’s a really fun place to be,” Francis said.

Reach Christie Wisniewski at:

cwisniewski@recorder.com

or 413-772-0261, ext. 280