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Farmers markets in North Fulton gearing up for summer season
by Joan Durbin
May 01, 2013 11:58 AM | 2795 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Erin Gray
Wellington Brooker, 4, spent some quality time with the Sweet Apple Farmers Market's unofficial mascot rooster "Fluffy" during last Thursday’s market.
Staff / Erin Gray Wellington Brooker, 4, spent some quality time with the Sweet Apple Farmers Market's unofficial mascot rooster "Fluffy" during last Thursday’s market.
Updated on May 3 at 3:15 p.m.: Due to the heavy rain forecast and flash flood warnings for Saturday, this weekend’s installment of the Alpharetta Farmers Market has been canceled. It will resume next Saturday on Old Canton Street in Downtown Alpharetta.

As spring finally settles in to place, farmers markets are setting up shop across north Fulton with edibles, home goods and enviro-friendly wares.

Alpharetta’s market began April 13 and will take place every Saturday through Oct. 12 from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the city hall parking lot on Main Street.

In existence since 2006, this is the granddaddy of area markets and is sponsored by the Downtown Alpharetta Trade Association. Vendors run the gamut from fresh produce, plants and naturally raised meats to organic cookies, salsa, spices, honey and baked goods.

Farther south, the Riverside Farmer’s Market in Roswell is going into is sixth year.

Normally, it would open in May, but this year the date will be June 1 due to a turnover in agents at the Fulton County University of Georgia Cooperative Extension, which sponsors the market.

Roswell resident Michael McLane is market manager this year, coordinating the operation with the new agent, Jose Rolando Orellana.

“I also assisted [previous agent] Louise Estabrooke at last year’s market, so there will be some continuity,” McLane said.

“Almost all of the vendors from last year will be returning. Among the market favorites are fruits and vegetables, artisan breads, baked goods, gourmet foods, bath and body items, and of course, great music. The selection will build as the summer harvest begins coming in.”

At its peak, Riverside will have a wide range of fresh vegetables, fruits and strawberries, blueberries and black berries, salad greens and fragrant herbs, goat and cow cheeses and artisan breads as well as items like bath salts, teas, dried flowers and baked goods. There is a sharpening service for culinary and garden tools.

“We will be looking for additional vendors this year and to get the word out about the market more aggressively. By late June, we will have a totally revised newsletter and accompanying web site so patrons can check for new events and products each week,” McLane said. “We hope to a greater role in the Roswell community.”

Riverside market will be in Roswell city hall parking lot, Saturdays, 8 a.m. to noon, from June 1 to Sept. 14.

Just last year, a farmers’ market sprouted up at Sweet Apple Village in Roswell.

Market coordinator Christy Hood-Cree said it has been running all year long.

“We have indoor space to move to when the weather is really cold,” she said.

The market is part of the shopping center’s community outreach and can offer as many as 25 to 30 vendors in the common area outdoors.

Edibles such as fresh eggs, baked goods and kefir drinks are at the market all year, with produce and natural meats having a larger presence in a few weeks, according to Hood-Cree.

The on-again, off-again warm temperatures played havoc with farmers’ planting schedules and most of the produce will show up a little later than usual, she said.

“But we’ll definitely have a lot of strawberries in two weeks and peaches in the second week of May,” she said.

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