Montavilla Farmers Market has big season opener

Neighbors come out in droves to visit the outer East Portland market, which is now open every Sunday through fall …

With 1,300 adults already at the Montavilla Farmers Market by noon, opening day business was brisk.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Pent-up shoppers’ demand was evident, as their “lucky” 13th season began for the Montavilla Farmers Market, on May 5.

Throughout the morning and early afternoon, droves of neighbors arrived at the market to check out the new vendors, and visit with the more than 80% of the sellers who were returning from last year.

Montavilla Farmers Market Manager Amanda Cross spends a moment with new vendors Kristine Quintana and Jeff Broadie, the “farmer-owner” of Lonesome Whistle Farm in Junction City near Eugene, who is showing heirloom grain products, including “Dakota Black Corn”.

“We’re opening with 35 vendors; but it’s not quite a full house,” observed the market’s manager, Amanda Cross. “Fruit and berry vendors will join us later, and we’ll have additional farms as their crops come in.”

Although they said they’d packed all the vegetables and prepared food they could fit in their vehicles, several vendors were nearly sold out by noon.

Pausing in their shopping excursion for a snack are Daniel Moe, Jade Johnson and Genevieve Johnson.

“People coming to the market say that there are excited that we are back,” Cross told East Portland News. “Seeing the fresh produce available, they consistently comment about the quality of the fresh foods here that they’ve been missing throughout the winter.”

It takes about eight volunteers on hand to set up, operate, and take down the market, Cross remarked. “Being a volunteer here is fun; you don’t have to be here the whole time, and you usually get have vendor discounts.|
“And after your first five hours, you get a free market T-shirt!” she said, encouraging volunteers to sign up.

Cindy Stewart-Rinier and Todd Stewart-Rinier of the Irvington neighborhood say they came to shop for fresh veggies, and buy some from Vyasa Thomas of Simplicity Gardens.

Montavilla Farmers Market is open from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. every Sunday. Kids and “well-behaved” dogs on leashes welcomed. It’s located on the gravel lot in the 7700 block of SE Stark Street – across the street from Mr. Plywood. For more information, see their website: CLICK HERE.

© 2019 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™



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