Every year when it starts to get frosty the Stonington Farmers’ Market moves inside to the COMO for the winter. Opening day of the winter market was cancelled last Saturday due to Hurricane Sandy but this Saturday, the Market will be in full swing, kicking off the winter season with fresh-baked bread, locally produced cheeses, farm fresh eggs, pasture raised meats, poultry and lamb. Throughout the winter, farmers will be growing micro greens, mushrooms, sprouts and green house veggies for the market. There’s also a wide selection of jams, honey, syrup, baked goods and prepared foods.
People mistakenly think that farmers’ markets stop operating once the summer is over. In fact, there are several markets that operate year round and we’re proud to be one of them. Of course, the COMO provides a great winter venue for our Market. It’s a good fit. We’re both organizations striving to bring community together.
The COMO is a Saturday morning destination in the winter. People stop in to shop for locally grown foods, to see what the market has to offer and to chat with the farmers or their neighbors. Families come with kids for the sports and arts programs and everyone loves the COMO Thrift Shop – whether they’re donating to the cause or on a treasure hunt for something unique.
We like to see our customers mingling while they enjoy a hot cup of homemade soup and a slice of fresh-baked bread. That’s one of the big differences between a farmers’ market and a grocery store. You can take your time, visit with people, buy food from the person who raised it, talk to them about their vegetables or their laying hens or how they made the cheese you’re sampling. It’s an indescribable feeling to come into the Market on a freezing winter day and find baby bok choy or delicate fresh spinach picked the night before by the farmer handing it to me. I guess it’s just sheer delight mixed with gratitude.
The winter Stonington Farmers’ Market is open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday through April at the COMO, 28 Cutler St., Stonington.
Julia Roberts is the Stonington Farmers’ Markert Market Coordinator.