The perfect word to describe the weather for summer season opening of Homewood Farmers Market? Perfect.
After a spring that kept fluctuating between warm days and cold rain, the turn for the better came right on time for the market, with sunshine and temperatures that eased into the lower 70s by late morning Saturday, May 23.
“We ordered good weather early, and it showed up,” said Market Manager Kate Duff.
Patrons took advantage of the sunny day to flock to the market. Duff said she was pleased with the turnout.
“It was too busy for me to do a count,” she said.
Duff said she saw many regular patrons, but she was pleased to see a good number of new visitors.
There was one new vendor, too: Taste of Heaven Cookies & More, which offers “baked goods and healthy treats for humans and the pets who love them,” according to the business’s Facebook page.
Duff said more regular vendors and several new ones will be appearing in coming weeks.
Village events coordinators Allisa Opyd and Anna Devries gave away reuseable shopping bags to people who shop at Homewood stores, and their supply of 150 bags was gone by mid-morning.
“It’s our way of saying ‘Thank you,'” Opyd said.
She said shopping bags would be available for $1 later this summer.
Opyd said the market is developing into an event in its own right, with live entertainment and fresh food available. It serves as a complement to the larger events the village sponsors downtown throughout the year.
“The farmers market bridges the gap between each of the wonderful events that we have,” she said “This is a mini-event each Saturday. It brings people out. It brings our residents together.”
Regulars seemed to agree.
Retired teachers Bob and Jane Hindsley, formerly with District 233 and District 153 respectively, said they have been coming to the market for years.
“It’s a great improvement,” Bob said. “We’ve seen it grow from when it was at St. Joe (Catholic Church) then St. Paul (Community Church), and then it came here. It’s really nice.”
“We like seeing our neighbors, and talking to them,” Jane said.
Both said they often run into former students while visiting the market.
Opyd and Devries were also promoting Chalk of the Town, a new feature at this year’s Art & Garden Fair.
The event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 13, will take place on Martin Avenue near Hickory Road.
Artist Nancy Pochis Bank will be creating a chalk version of one of the Art Institute of Chicago’s most famous pieces, Georges Seurat’s “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.” Local artists and children will be able to create their own chalk art, either their own versions of Seurat’s painting or whatever their imaginations suggests.
“We’re hoping to nurture this, and this will be a part of our Art & Garden Street Fair every year,” Opyd said.
The next market session will be Saturday, May 30, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., in the Village Hall parking lot at 2020 Chestnut Road. It was slated to be the first session featuring the new Hunt and Gather section, where patrons will find crafts and collectibles in addition to regular food and produce offerings. The Hunt & Gather session has been postponed to June 6 because rain is in the forecast for tomorrow, according to village officials.
Music will be provided by Jim Ruse.
Contact Eric Crump at [email protected]
Homewood Farmers Market responds to input from patrons and vendors as new season begins Saturday (HF Chronicle, May 18, 2015)
Kirk Lindstrom provides a little Woody Guthrie music at the first market session:
The Shermans describe their first visit to the market: