This is our annual kick off for Plant A Row, Grow A Row, our partnership with Edmonton's Food Bank that is designed to collect fresh fruits and veggies and deliver them to the food bank in the fall. It is our opportunity to make a difference in a really important way, contributing "real food" to the Food Bank's storage vaults: food that is fresh, nutrient dense and ever-so-healthy! To find out more about this important initiative, read these old blog posts:
- Plant A Row Grow A Row: A Unique Partnership
- Plant A Row, Grow A Row: What Do I Plant?
- A Tour of the Food Bank
The Edmonton Food Bank and its volunteers will be onsite collecting donations of:
- Sealed Bags of Rice
- Empty Egg Cartons
- Boxed, Canned & Bagged non-perishable Food Donations
- Any used shopping bags
Help us Grow A Stack of egg cartons at the SWEFM Info Tent for Edmonton's Food Bank... how tall can we make it??? The food bank is always in need of empty egg cartons.
Our veggie growers will have plants ready for your gardens and hanging baskets all set to beautify your front porches, balconies and backyard decks. Most importantly, there will be little vegetable plants ready to put in your gardens and patio pots for Plant A Row, Grow A Row.
A number of organizations will be on site to answer any questions you might have and to help you take your gardening to the next level.
Master Gardeners will be on site in our Community Tent... ask them any questions you have about gardening! They will have the answers! At the same time, they have a children's craft for your kids to do to help them participate in Plant A Row, Grow A Row. Stop by and have them make a newspaper pot and plant a seed or a seed potato for the food bank. Then take it home, plop it directly into a pot or your garden and.. voilà!... your kids are growing a donation!
Master Composter will also be at our market this year, teaching us all how to compost our kitchen and yard waste easily, efficiently and effectively. Stop by their booth to see for yourself how easy it can be to turn your garbage into valuable, nutrient-dense goodness for your garden!
Sustainable Food Edmonton focuses on ways to make our local food resources support our community, lessening our dependence on food trucked and shipped in from afar. Eating local food decreases the environmental cost of our food system, and increases the nutrient density of our food... find out more by stopping at their booth.
Here's what else you can expect to find at your community market this week.
For The Kids
Baring 25km/h winds (or greater... keep your fingers crossed!), kids can come and have a blast on the giant inflatable slide! It's 16 feet wide, 30 feet long and 22 feet high!! Just think how much energy your kids will expend racing up and down this slide... and how well they'll sleep at night! Rides will be $1 each, or $5 for unlimited slides. Remember that the slide will only be set up if, by noon Wednesday, the winds are & are forecasted to be 25km/hour or less.
Once again, wee ones can be transformed into butterflies and tigers when they get their faces painted with wonderfully creative and vivid designs by The Dolphin Lady that will be sure to spark their imaginations and instil a little wonderment into their lives... her hair has been blue, her hair has been pink... who knows what crazy colour it'll be this week! Pretzel will be there as well, creating amazing balloon figures in fabulous designs and colours as only he can, sure to amaze the inner child in all of us!
For Your Kitchen
Fresh veggies are finally trickling in... expect to see rhubarb for sure, and possibly spinach, this week! Dargatz Family Farms, The Holden Colony and Riverbend Gardens will have their over-wintered potatoes, carrots and squashes on hand. And you'll find herb plants, ready for your kitchen garden. There will be farm-fresh eggs as well. And of course, Good Morning Honey will have their bee-made products on hand.
There are other staples available as well, such as... fresh bread at Prairie Mill Bakery or gluten free bread at Celebrate, Gluten Free. There are wonderfully buttery croissants & crunchy arlettes at Raspberry Cocoa for your breakfast or for your afternoon/after dinner tea. And decadent cupcakes at Sweet Stuff. There are intriguing homemade icecreasm at Back To Basics. And there are prepared jams, jellies and savoury sauces at Fruits of Sherbrooke.
Do you have a hankering for something Mediterranean (think Italy, Greece & Turkey)? There are pre-made items like dips at Theo's Greek Kuzina and Turkish food at Melodi's Kitchen. There are pastas... both regular and gluten-free at Back To Basics.
How about something Indian or Thai? Mini Kitchen will be here each week from now on selling frozen Indian and Thai food, prepared for your home table with favourites like butter chicken, coconut chicken and naan bread for dipping.
There's plenty of fresh produce available from our local greenhouses! TR Greenhouses and The Holden Colony will have cucumbers (large, long English and small sized, great for snacking & packing in lunches for the kids), tomatoes (including small, sweet tomatoes on the vine and my personal favourite... the incredibly chewy, meaty & unbelievably flavour filled zebra tomatoes) and peppers (sweet & hot).
Plenty of options are available for meat for your weekday meals, from whole chickens, lamb, cuts of beef and bison through to prepared sausages, deli meats and jerkies. Be sure to check out what is available this week... and remember, vendors like Greenstein Farm (lamb), Red Tractor Meats and Sunworks Family Farm all accept pre-orders which make your market shopping very simple.
Just go to our website (http://www.swefm.ca/meat-vendors.html), find their profile (in alphabetical order on our list) and click on their links to connect to their websites to place your order. Then, show up on wednesday and make your last stop at their booths, pick up and pay for your order, and head straight home to your fridges and freezers. There are also frozen fish items and bottled sauces to enhance your fishy meals at Food Direct.
The food trucks are back again! Once again, expect to find delicious comfort food from the food trucks, those gourmet kitchens on wheels. Bully will be back, serving great, inventive foods that feature meat, bread, fruit & veggie vendors at our market. Sailin' On will be back this week, and we'll have a new food truck with Big City Sandwich on site, introducing us to one more take on the whole food truck scene. Little Village will be on hiatus one more market, returning next week. Fat Franks will be on hand serving hot dogs and cooked smokies & sausages. Desserts can always be found at Pink Kernel (ice cream, mini donuts, cotton candy), Sweet Stuff (cupcakes), Phil's Fudge, and soft icecream cones at The Butchers' Bus.
This Week's Line-Up
Artisans & Crafts People:
Ada's Soap Shop (natural products that do not irritate eczema: olive oil soap, soap shapes)
Expressions by Lori (custom fit women's clothing)
Hemperial Fidelis (soaps, lotions, natural bug spray (body/bath stuff), soy candles, 1/4" twine, raw hemp, hemp seeds, organic and pressed hemp oil)
Mod Shop Tots (Crocheted children's items, booties, cotton hats, hair accessories)
Orange Avocado (jewellery)
Jewels by Amy (crystal & silver jewellery)
Traveling Author, Lynn Link
Vicki Sather Design (Hats, lampshades, pillowcase covers)
Prairie Mill Bread (organic, preservative-free bread)
Sweet Stuff Cakes (cupcakes)
Food Direct (fish)
Sunworks Organic Farm (chicken, beef, prepared sausages)
Big City Sandwich
Bully Food Truck (gourmet comfort foods like mac & cheese, poutine, turkey burger, salad, pulled pork grilled cheese sandwich)
Fat Franks (gourmet hot dogs, smokies & drinks)
Original Canadian Kettle Popcorn (kettle corn, cotton candy, soft drinks)
The Pink Kernel (mini donuts, cotton candy, shaved ice, kettle corn, lemonade, water, yo yo balloons)
Sailin' On (Vegan)
Holden Colony (vegetables, pickles, salsa, garlic powder)
The Mallow Fellow (gourmet marshmallows in 20 flavours)
Mini Kitchen (frozen, prepared Thai & Indian Food)
Visit our website at http://www.swefm.ca
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Contributed by Sheri Hendsbee