There's so much more I could say about buying local food, but this isn't a food blog, it's a blog about family friendly activities and ways to get out and about with your kids in Prince George's County. And farmers markets are not only your best source of fresh, local food, they are an awesome family-friendly activity!
Farmers markets are a great way to introduce your kids to a wide variety of produce and to help make the connection between the farmer and the food. I always find the vendors to be friendly and ready to answer questions about the best way to store and prepare what they are selling. If you think creatively, there are so many educational opportunities for your kids. Younger kids might have fun seeking out different color produce. Can they find something purple? Red? Orange? Older kids will love choosing which bag of peaches or ears of corn look most appetizing (and won't they be more likely to eat it if they helped choose it?!).
The Maryland Department of Agriculture lists ten weekly farmers markets in Prince George's County. Check one out this week in honor of the Buy Local Challenge!
Of course, I am biased here, but I strongly recommend you and your family come on over to Cheverly this weekend to check out the Cheverly Community Market! This is the second summer in a row that Cheverly has had their very own community market and it just keeps getting better. The market is a completely home-grown effort by a few incredibly dedicated volunteers who wanted close-to-home options for purchasing fresh, local--not to mention, delicious--food for their families.
Here are a few things I love about our market.
1) Neighbors. Even if I could accomplish my actual shopping in 30 minutes, I know I have to plan to spend at least an hour at the market. I see so many of our neighbors. Lucas always sees a few of his little buddies and they run around while Abel and I catch-up with our neighborhood friends.
2) Fresh, fresh food. A few weeks ago I purchased new potatoes which had been dug from the earth just the day before. In fact, the man I bought them from had most likely done the digging. When I was younger my mom's cousins owned a potato farm and would bring bags of freshly dug potatoes to our family reunion each summer. Let me tell you, there is nothing like a potato that is only a day or two out of the ground. Another time, I bought a half dozen peaches. Again, they had been picked just the day before. The sweet, sweet girl who sold them to me cautioned to wait two days before eating them. She wanted them to be at their prime for me. I was barely able to resist but am glad I did. Because on days 3, 4, 5 and 6 I thoroughly enjoyed taking big bites of peach as the juice drizzled down my chin.
3) Music. Our Cheverly Community Market has a house band! I love it when Lucas takes a few minutes to dance--solo or with other kids--at the market. With that great music playing, he just can't help himself.
This Saturday just so happens to be a Market Saturday. Come on over to Cheverly and check it out for yourself!
The Cheverly Community Market takes place Saturday mornings (generally the second and fourth Saturdays of the month), 8:00am to noon , in the heart of Cheverly, Maryland, at the Cheverly Community Center, 6401 Forest Road. Complete list of dates here.
Visit the Maryland Department of Agriculture for a list of all Maryland farmers markets arranged by county.