Tag Archives: eating seasonally

Thank You for Another Great Season!

Thank You for Another Great Season!

Andrea Evelsizer – Board President

Another Farmers Market Season has come and gone so I want to share the
highlights from 2018. The market has been growing each year since we moved
to the Surf parking lot and this year we hosted 52 vendors, 29 of which
attended for the full season. Each week you could shop from an average
35-40 vendors ranging from fresh produce, eggs, meat, honey, and baked
goods to handmade soaps, jewelry, rugs, pottery and other handcrafted
items. This year we welcomed 18 youth vendors selling items like fudge,
pet toys, apples, coffee, baked goods and more. The youth vending program
has been a great success and we hope to grow this in future years.

We enjoyed live music each week, by local musicians, and held five
cooking/taste testing events in a partnership with Healthy Harvest of
North Iowa and their Charlie Cart mobile kitchen.

All these successes can be attributed to the great support of our city,
chamber of commerce, local business sponsors and the shoppers from near
and far. We often hear that visitors to Clear Lake are shopping at our
market and that we’re known to be the largest market between Des Moines
and the Twin Cities.

Specifically, the Clear Lake Farmers Market board and vendors would
like to thank all of our wonderful sponsors for their support this year,
including: CDI Inc., Kingland, Hall Realty, CLTel, and Ray and Terri
Mulford. Also, thank you to the Surf Ballroom for the use of your parking
lot, Simply Nourished for the snacks at the youth activities table and to
all the volunteers, vendors, and loyal customers.

Even after the market ends there are still ways to enjoy local products
during the off season. Healthy Harvest of North Iowa has a database on
their website (www.healthyharvestni.com) where
you can search for local food products such as meat, eggs, honey, fall
crops (squash, pumpkins, potatoes, carrots, onions etc.) and purchase
directly from the farmers. Many farmers are willing to deliver to you.
Simply Nourished Market (downtown, to the east of City Park) sources as
much as possible locally year round and the Hy-Vee stores in Mason City
are sourcing more and more local product from North Iowa Fresh, LLC. (www.northiowafresh.net),
Kittleson Potatoes, and other local growers. Also, many of our vendors
will be attending holiday arts and craft shows, so keep an eye out for
those.

Thank you for a great year, it was really fun! We’re look forward to
seeing you next year!

The Gangs All Here!

The Gangs All Here!

By Ashley Stokke

There may be the chill of fall in the air and a subtle stillness
of children back into the classroom, but don’t be deceived! The Clear
Lake Farmers Market gang is ALL HERE!!! That’s right. This time of
year there is an abundance of delicious fall produce and a bounty of
beautiful fall ornamentation that our market vendors are thrilled to be able
to offer to their customers. Fall season produce takes on a natural sweetness with cool nights and is a delicious addition to your dinner table.

If you didn’t already know it, the Clear Lake Farmers Market is open
WELL into the fall season to offer you the freshest produce and
ornamentals possible. The market is open every Saturday now through the third
weekend in October! Our final market day will be Saturday, October 20th, so
there is lots of time to come out and enjoy all of the wonderful flavors,
sights and smells of fall. And don’t forget about our amazing artisans
and talented crafters. There are some amazing products available that
would make lovely holiday gifts! It’s always nice to get some holiday shopping out of the way early.

I’d also like to take a minute to say what a wonderful season it
hasbeen so far at the Clear Lake Farmers Market. There have been
great turnouts every week and the vendors do such a fantastic job of
being consistent with their customers. The music has been a wonderful
treat to market goers as well as the children’s activities and Youth
Vending days. It is vital to the future of our market to get these young entrepreneurs involved in local food production, vending, and just being a part of a farmers market. It really is such a fun place to start your Saturday morning in beautiful Clear Lake.

See you at market!

Celebrating Local Food

The Clear Lake Local Foods Committee is planning their 5th annual local food event for October 6th, 2018 from 4 to 7 p.m.   CLICK HERE for more information.  This year’s potluck style event will be a celebration of the bounty of our locally-grown food at the Central Gardens of North Iowa and will feature hot, homemade soups made with fresh, local ingredients. This family friendly event will include yard games, folk music and gift drawings.  There is no charge for the event but your free will donation is appreciated!

You Bring:
Potluck dish to share – local ingredients are encouraged!
(side dish, bread, salad, appetizer or dessert)
Lawn chairs or picnic blanket
Your own place setting and drinks.

BIG Thank You to CL Tel for the generous music sponsorship, Furleigh Fruit & Vegetable Farm for the pumpkins and gourds for the center pieces, Central Gardens of North Iowa for being a great partner and the following businesses for donating to our gift basket: Simply Nourished, Mossycup Farms, Natural Plus Nursery, Clear Lake Farmers Market, Cerro Gordo County Public Health, Healing House Herb Shop and North Iowa Fresh.
 
The goal of the Clear Lake Community Farm to Fork Dinner Committee is to provide an event that brings local food producers, local food establishments, and the community together in an effort to strengthen awareness and build relationships. We view local food as a tool for community and economic development, as well as for improving public health. In addition, fresh local food just tastes good!  Proceeds from the previous dinners have been used to help fund the improvements that were made to our Clear Lake Farmers Market, kick start the Share Life summer Kids Cafe, and purchase plants for the Central Garden’s Bee Happy garden. We have many ideas for exciting future projects!

To All The Newbies

To All The Newbies
By James Eilders, Clear Lake Farmers Market Board Member
As a first year board member, and a city boy I was a little worried to come to market. I knew that the people at market spoke a different language. Words like microgreens, artisan, and heirloom are foreign to me. I was afraid that I would be in over my head and everyone would know I don’t belong.

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