Wednesday, May 30th: It’s Opening Day of the 2012 Season!

Chef Jason Brzozowy of Tilth explaining the basics during is 2011 Wallingford Farmers Market cooking demonstration. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Woohoo! The long winter of our discontent comes to an end, and our dear Wallingford Farmers Market returns for a 7th fabulous season today. It is the start of our 2nd season at the beautiful Meridian Park at the corner of Meridian Avenue N. and N. 50th Street. Come join us for a wonderful Opening Day of the 2012 season. Reacquaint yourself with your favorite returning vendors, meet the many new vendors we’ve added, load up on groceries, grab a snack, enjoy some music, visit with friends and neighbors and take in a great Opening Day cooking demonstration at 4 p.m. with Chef Jason Brzozowy of Tilth.

Just a quick reminder: the Market opens to the public at 3:30 p.m. (chefs only from 3:30-3:30 p.m.), and please do not park in the Good Shepherd Center parking lot or along Sunnyside Avenue N. There is plenty of parking along Meridian, but we also encourage you to walk, bike or bus it to your Wallingford Farmers Market. Thanks!

Spring braising mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Alm Hill Gardens is back with all manner of Whatcom County deliciousness. Today, they will have baby leeks, some asparagus, their famous spicy salad mix, a few pints of strawberries for the early birds, this beautiful spring braising mix (above), and much, much more! They might even have a few tomato plants for your garden, too.

Japanese wax turnips from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

One Leaf Farm is one of the wonderful new farms in East King County, just founded in 2011, and we are thrilled to have them join us at your Wallingford Farmers Market for the 2012 season! Besides these gorgeous Japanese wax turnips, they currently have some lovely radishesrainbow chardgreen garlic, mustard greens, and some amazing varieties of heirloom lettuces, just for starters.

Farm-fresh sausages and burgers on the grill from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Skagit River Ranch is one of those stalwart farms at which lines form early each Sunday at Ballard Farmers Market. One of the first farms to embrace regulatory changes in 2001 that allowed meat sales at King County farmers markets and the creation of the nation’s first USDA-inspected mobile processing facility based in Skagit County, Skagit River Ranch has long been a go-to farm for beefporklambchickeneggsbaconsausages and more, direct from the farmer. The good news is that they are also joining us as a vendor this season. The better news is that they will be grilling and serving their own burgers and sausages!

Organic asparagus from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Alvarez Organic Farms also returns for another great season. They’ll have plenty of their organic asparagus tomorrow, as well as green garlicspring sweet and red onionsdried chili peppers and beansroasted peanuts and more, and maybe even a few sugar snap peas!

The working girls at Sky Valley Family Farm. Photo courtesy Sky Valley Family Farm.

You ever wonder what is meant by a farm claiming their eggs are laid by pastured hens? This will answer your question. These are just a few of the egg-laying hens at Sky Valley Family Farm in Snohomish County. Sky Valley is joining us this year at your Wallingford Farmers Market. They have eggs. Lots of eggs. Eggs, eggsEGGS!!! Finally, farm-fresh eggs in abundance at your Wallingford Farmers Market! Woohoodillydoo!

Pea vines from Gaia’s Natural Goods. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Gaia’s Natural Goods is a Hmong farm in Snohomish that grows beautiful, nutrient-dense vegetables, and they, too, are joining us anew this season at your Wallingford Farmers Market. Besides these pea vines, right now, they have some awesome beets, beautiful lettuces, kale, brokale, and even some great pickled beets!

Beautiful lettuce from Summer Run. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of lettuce, Summer Run Farm, a perennial Wallingford Farmers Market favorite, returns with their amazing, and huge, heads of lettuce today. They also have all kinds of great plants for your vegetable and herb garden. As each week progresses, Summer Run will have more and more great  veggies.

Fresh bagels from Grateful Bread Bakery. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Grateful Bread Bakery returns for its third season with us. Based in Wedgewood, they make all kinds of wonderful baked goods, from these bagels to artisan breads to challah to cookies and pastries. Swing by and get your local bread on!

Yellow, pink and white oyster mushrooms from Red Owl Mushroom Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Red Owl Mushroom Farm also got its launch in early 2011, and your Wallingford Farmers Market was the first place they ever sold a mushroom! They are back again, with more of these delicious oyster mushrooms, as well as shiitake mushrooms, a few lion’s mane mushrooms, and if we’re lucky, maybe even a few morel mushrooms. And did you know that Red Owl Mushroom Farm is based right in the city of Seattle? Cool, huh?

Bread & Butter pickles from Purdy Pickle. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

When Purdy Pickle told us they wanted to come to your Wallingford Farmers Market to sell their huge selection of local pickles, we said… um… YES!!! They pickle cukesbeetscarrotsonions… seemingly whatever grows around here! Stop by and introduce yourself, and try a sample or two, then take home a jar or six with you. You can thank me later!

Viking Purple potatoes from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Olsen Farms grows the best potatoes just about anywhere, and they grow like 25 varieties of them! Like these incredible Viking purple potatoes that have a creamy, white flesh just perfect for steaming and mashing with butter. They have a potato for every occasion. They also have beefporklambsausagesham and more. And they, too, are returning for another great season to your Wallingford Farmers Market.

Bean sprouts from Sprouters Northwest. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sprouts, anyone? Because this season, we are being joined by Sprouters Northwest of Kent. They grow all different kinds of sprouts, from broccoli to radish to bean, and many more. Sprouts are nutrient-dense and delicious, and make for a great addition to salads, sandwiches and as a garnish.

The kiddie cue at Whidbey Island Ice Cream. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Whidbey Island Ice Cream is back with their cool little cart and their amazing variety of ice cream bars and pints. Just look for the big line of kids! And hey, don’t you miss these vendors and many others at Wallingford’s weekly summer happening — your Wallingford Farmers Market. We are so excited to be back. We missed you guys!

Of course, this is just a highlighting of what you will find today. There is still plenty of other stuff just waiting for you at your Wallingford Farmers Market this week. For a full accounting of what you will find, check out What’s Fresh Now!

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