Ah, summer! Nothing says warm nights and hot weather like Farmer’s Markets! We love going to the markets, picking out fresh produce, and/or fresh flowers while enjoying the fresh air and entertainment! Farmer’s markets are a great way to get to know local producers and farms. It’s also a great way to try new food, produce and products!

Here are the farmer’s markets in and around Marshalltown:

  1. Marshalltown Farmer’s Market - Now through October
    Located at the Cartwright Pavilion on the corner of 2nd Avenue and State Street, this is a great place to get some local fresh produce! It's from 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. on Wednesdays and 8:00 - 11:00 a.m. Saturdays. Right off of Main Street, it's a great way to meet local vendors, hang out and then walk down Main Street to eat lunch or dinner! 
     
  2. Twilight Farmer's Market - Marshalltown Mall - July 26, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
    A new event this year, this is going to be held at the Marshalltown Mall parking lot, near the highway. Over 40 vendors have signed on to come. This will be a great evening of food, fun and entertainment! 6 Man Big Band from Des Moines will be there, so bring out your dancing shoes and come for a fun time!
     
  3. State Center Farmer’s Market - Fridays, 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. through October
    This market is located on the south side of West Main Street. The outdoor market features locally produced products, prepared food vendors, free children's activities, and local entertainment. It all happens each Friday evening along the historic Lincoln Highway in downtown State Center! For more information, please contact Everett Halsted, State Center Development Association, at 641-483-3002.    
     
  4. Jasper County Farmer’s Market - Tuesdays through Sept., 4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
    This lively market is located at 501 West Third Street North in Newton. Come for the produce, stay for the fun. 
     
  5. Des Moines Farmer's Market - Saturdays through October, 7:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
    This market is huge and fun for the whole family. So many food vendors to chose from! Not to mention all the fresh produce and flowers. Live music and friendly people round out this great family market. 
     
  6. Ames Farmers' Market - Saturdays through October, 8:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
    Cooking demonstrations and cook-offs are part of this great market. This market is a resource to connect consumers to locally grown produce such as fresh fruit, vegetables, meats, cheeses, arts, crafts, fresh flowers, plants and much more. This even is family friends, providing live local entertainment and numerous children's activities.  

Don’t have time to go to a market? You can grow your own in your backyard! If you don’t have a backyard you can also choose a few plants and grow them in a container, such as these:

Here are a few articles on how to grow your own container garden: 

http://www.burpee.com/gardenadvicecenter/vegetables/tomatoes/container-vegetables/article10003.html

http://www.bhg.com/gardening/vegetable/vegetables/growing-vegetables-in-containers/

Happy shopping and growing! What is your favorite produce to purchase at the local farmer’s market?