It's Wednesday June 19, 2013
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Oriental’s Farmers’ Market has been happening along that stretch of Hodges Street since July 2007 when Christie Foster, Brenna Wilcox and Melinda Penkava began selling organic NC produce, home-baked bread, pesto and locally grown arugula.The idea caught on. Sandie Beal joined the market shortly after, bringing the bounty from her Academy Street garden (as well as a wealth of experience growing crops out in the mountains of NC.) In time, more bakers and artisans became part of Oriental’s Saturday market. So did folks selling pecans, honey, plants, seafood, and locally laid eggs.Summer 2007 when the Farmers’ Market was a few weeks old. Three vendors grew to 4 and 5 and more. Here: Bob, Brenna, Christie, and Sandie.
Customers came, too. Folks liked to have a place to buy this kind of food and goods. And, they constantly tell us, they like having that community gathering place, too.
While the market started out with intentions of providing certified organic produce from NC, there were some challenges in getting it to our end of the state economically. The market evolved and the emphasis shifted: the market would try its best to bring locally grown produce to customers. The vegetables and fruits and herbs come from the gardens around town, and farms within a 50 mile radius, such as the R’Gardens in New Bern.
The owners of the Wit’s End provide the space where the vendors set up every week. That, along with the customers and the growers, bakers and artisans, combine to make a little magic happen on Saturday mornings in Oriental.A Previous Oriental Farmers’ Market
Oriental is home to Pamlico County’s first farmers’ market. Some may remember a previous Farmers’ Market in Oriental that took place behind the post office. At that market as at the current one, the emphasis was on local food, grown with little or no chemicals. Here are some photos from the Oriental Farmers’ Market in 2003:
Farmers' Market Hours
The Farmers' Market is on Hodges Street near the Harbor