Orange, Athol farmers markets to open for season 

  • The Orange Farmers Market opens for the season on Thursday while the Athol Farmers Market starts Saturday. Recorder file photo/Paul Franz

Recorder Staff
Thursday, May 17, 2018

ORANGE — Asparagus, maple syrup, goat cheese and other fresh products will hit the streets as Orange and Athol open their farmers markets for the season.

Today, from 3 to 6 p.m. the Orange Farmers Market opens in the Orange Armory parking lot at 141 East Main St., and will reopen each Thursday through October.

Two days later, the Athol Farmers Market opens up Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at the Uptown Common on Main Street, and will reconvene each Saturday, also through October.

According to Rachel Gonzalez, market manager for the Orange Farmers Market, 12 vendors will sell an array of goods — from meat to vegetables, fruits and even soap — at the Orange location.

“When it’s grown in your area, people have a lot of love for the land and make wonderful products,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez’s own stand, Rachel’s Everlastings, will sell smoothies and tomatoes, as well as flowers, and later in the season will have fresh corn, beans and salsa.

Throughout the summer and into the fall, vendors will offer different goods as the growing and harvesting seasons progress, Gonzalez said.

“As a vendor and a farmer, we all love growing and selling and giving,” Gonzalez said.

“A lot of people are growing either organic or sustainable produce, which in turn helps the community,” she added.

The Orange location will also feature an entertainment tent — courtesy of the Orange Cultural Council — with different local musicians each week. Children’s tents at the farmers markets will offer agriculture-themed activities, including a petting zoo as well as face painting and temporary tattoos.

According to Gonzalez, supporting local agriculture at this year’s farmers markets is a good way to keep money in the local economy while getting the chance to bring home some healthy food. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program food cards will be accepted.