By Fred Mills
The farm-to-table movement has never been stronger and there is no better way to build a direct line from a local farm to your table than by visiting one of our great local farmers markets. There are a multitude of markets in our area and this month we will focus on the big three in our area with highlights from each.
The Roswell Farmers & Artisans Market is open on Saturdays from 8 a.m. ’til noon at Roswell City Hall, located at 38 Hill St. From the start, the market was called the “Riverside Farmers Market,” so named because the first location was a dirt parking area in Roswell’s Riverside Park. Excitement always followed the ritual ringing of the cowbell signifying the start of the market. The market quickly outgrew the parking facilities and moved to a sunny parking lot behind Roswell City Hall. They feature a wide array of fresh fruits, vegetables, and unique baked goods from a variety of local farmers and bakers. They average over 1,200 people each week and there is plenty of parking. For more info visit roswellfam.com.
The Alpharetta Farmers Market, opening on Apr.14, is one of the finest places in the area to enjoy fresh, locally sourced farmers’ products, delectable treats, and experience the Alpharetta community. Each week, the market offers locally grown produce; natural meat; gardeners with fresh flowers and plants; hand-crafted gifts, jellies, sauces, and soaps; homemade bread, desserts and baked goods; local raw honey; food vendors; and other Southern food producers.
Downtown Alpharetta merchants, wanting a place where residents could conveniently purchase fresh local produce, created the market in 2006. The first market was held under the old oak tree in the city parking lot. Since then, the Alpharetta Farmers Market has literally blossomed into a Saturday morning destination not to be missed. Their hours are each Sat. 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. from mid-April through mid-October. At the corner of Milton Avenue and Old Canton Street in Downtown Historic Alpharetta, it is open to the public and admission is free. For more info visit alpharettafarmersmarket.com.
The Marietta Square Farmers Market is open all year on Saturdays but in May they add Sunday to the mix giving you an extra day of freshness. They average 65 vendors and hundreds of customers each week with a wide variety to choose from including heirloom tomatoes, fruits and vegetables that are rarely, if ever, available from the grocery store. They also have lots of the staples such as potatoes, onions, tomatoes, squash, and beans, in addition to patty pan squash, heirloom salad mix, amazing cut flower arrangements, local honey, herbal soaps, whole grain breads, jelly, jam, and preserves. They are open Sat., 9 a.m. to noon year ’round and Sundays, noon to 3 p.m., May through October. For more info visit