Fall officially arrived on September 21st with the Autumn Equinox. The leaves are starting to proudly display their artistic talents and it is safe to turn the oven on for long periods of time without sweating out the entire day's water intake in 15 minutes. This week I made sweet potato filling (baked 5 large sweet potatoes wrapped in tinfoil @ 400 for 2 hours - the skin just peels off, mash with a fork and freeze in 2 cup portions - made 8 cups) and a huge batch of applesauce. All stored in the freezer.
When winter comes and I am really missing the market, I thaw out a serving of sweet potato and make biscuits, or muffins, or hummus. The applesauce gets warmed and served with vanilla ice cream and I stay connected to the source of my food and my comfort. I miss the weekly social gathering but the memories get me through until next market season.
We are putting plans in place for our annual market Harvest Fest. We are planning for a open-house type gathering for the evening of Saturday November 6th - stay tuned for more details and ticket sales.
This projecting into the near future also brings up another season - Christmas. Crazy as it sounds, it is just two months around the corner. Carol and Gladys and all things Christmas are starting back at the market this weekend with their beautiful miniature trees and decorations. Their display always attracts a crowd - especially the 10 and under crowd. I had mentioned earlier about the International Plowing Match and a few of our vendors being away this weekend. Most have managed to arrange coverage for both the IPM and our market so it is market morning as usual (with the exception of Kim McCarvell of Green Leaf Gourmet will be away this week). I might have mentioned that Farmgate is away this weekend which is NOT the case. They will be at our market as usual - they MIGHT be away next weekend (Oct 2nd) for their big move but I will keep you posted on that. There will be pumpkins by the trailer-full and plenty of squash and root vegetables to stock up on. And if you really are keen about Christmas, don't forget to visit our jewlery, artist, and natural skin care vendors. The perfect way to shop ahead and give gifts with a local flavour.
I have been to the IPM to help out a little with the farmers' market there and it is amazing to say the least. Tomorrow I am taking my kids and attending as a visitor rather than a volunteer. If you can manage the crowds, it is worth the trip. There's a shuttle service from the railway museum on Wellington Street here in town to the site if you want to avoid the parking and wagon ride from the airport.
So far, my favourite exhibits include the farmers' market tent with sample fest (of course), the live animal exhibit in the education tent, the City of St. Thomas' mini replica of the train station complete with concrete floor and bricked walls, and the rodeo corral. I'm looking forward to the tractor square dance and a ride in the hydro bucket to see an ariel view of the entire site but I'll need to convince the kids on that one.
I'm looking forward to seeing you at the market on Saturday - that is one thing that I miss at the IPM Farmers' Market - connecting with you all!
Horton Farmers' Market
2 Manitoba St. (north of the lights at Giant Tiger on Talbot)