Season’s first East Portland farmers market opens

Take a look at what is cropping up at the 2013 Parkrose Farmers Market every Saturday …

On opening day, shoppers get a feel for the new season at the Parkrose Farmers Market.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Instead of high winds and rain to greet their first market day of the season, the 2013 Parkrose Farmers Market kicked off under mostly sunny skies and with a light breeze, on May 4.

The new market’s manager, Stan Griffith, was out of town, but Market board member and Volunteer Coordinator MaryLu Baetkey stepped in for him.

Parkrose Farmers Market board members Scott Wood, MaryLu Baetkey, Shelley Loring, and Bev Keagbine are on hand for the first market day.

“The original market manager and his wife have retired from the position,” Baetkey told East Portland News. “We are beginning anew. Today, we have more vendors – and a huge variety of vendors.”

The lineup for the mid-County market opening day included 26 vendors. Few were selling fresh vegetables – but then, it is very early in the season, she pointed out.

In the public area, off to the side of the market, Richard Arthur musically entertains.

“The most important thing is, as people are walking through today, they’ve said that they want to come back throughout the season. That is what we want to hear. Talking to the vendors, they are looking forward to coming back as well.”

Those operating the market count the help of volunteers, Baetkey said. “The Parkrose baseball team comes at 7 a.m., and they set up our tents for the market, and help us take it all down at 3:00 p.m., after the market closes.”

Pacific Northwest Federal Credit Union Community Liaison Judy Kennedy says PNFCU provides free EBT and debit card processing, because the not-for-profit organization “loves helping the community”.

Again this year, Pacific Northwest Federal Credit Union, located in outer East Portland, is helping out at the market, observed its Community Liaison, Judy Kennedy.

“We’re again sponsoring their Oregon Trail Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card program and debit card system. This means shoppers can use their EBT card or the debit card free; no charge.”

Bridgette Merrill of Maryhill Farms shows off her bounty of fresh asparagus.

The Parkrose Farmers Market is open every Saturday through October, from 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. As noted, the market accepts Oregon Trail and debit cards.

You’ll find the market at Parkrose High School – in the EAST parking lot – at 12003 NE Shaver Street, a half-block west of NE 122nd Avenue.

For more information, see their website: CLICK HERE, or contact Stan Griffith at

© 2013 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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