Now that it’s finally spring, I can’t wait to start our annual family tradition of Farmers Market Fun every Saturday morning! Nothing is better than a sunny day, shared with the family, selecting fresh produce, and checking out the offerings of our local farmers market!
Why Go to a Farmers Market?
The grocery store is so much quicker than a Farmers Market trip, right? Well, maybe, but during the weekend, when I am not in as much of a rush, I look to share experiences with my family, instead of chores!
The Farmers Market can be a great learning experience for kids. We like to discuss where the items were grown, and we talk to the farmers about their produce. My family and I take our time, trying samples, and learning all that we can! The Farmers Market turns routine grocery shopping into an educational even that our family can share.
Enjoying a steaming cup of coffee, while sampling all of the locally-grown produce and fresh baked goods is a pretty nice way to start a Saturday morning! I love being able to watch my kids take an active interest in the food that they eat, and learn more about their likes, dislikes, and personalities. Last summer, I would have passed by the sweetest blueberries I have ever had if my 2-year-old had not reached for the sample. YUM!
I also like that we are directly benefiting our local farmers who work tirelessly to keep food on our table. It’s a remarkable thing, having a conversation with the person who literally grew your groceries! The Farmers Market keeps us tapped into our community, which is so important, especially in s time when we are “plugged” in most of the week. It’s nice to “unplug” and in doing so, reconnect!
Involving Your Kids During a Farmers Market Trip
Whenever we go to the Farmers Marker, I like to encourage my kids to pick one new fruit or vegetable that they have never had before, and we will try it in a new recipe at home – it’s a great way to discover new foods!
One particular visit, we gave the kids cash from some “chores” they had done and allowed them the chance to explore. Those kids took it all in, looking at all the vibrant colors, to find exactly what they wanted to purchase. One choose a bright yellow marigold to put on our front porch and the other chose the biggest cookie he could get his hands on.
Kids can also help during the planning stage, when you select meals for the week, and put together a list. You can also involve them in working with your grocery budget, and show what a challenge ,and how rewarding it can be to stay within the budget. If they are able to stay below budget, there is left over money to use for an ice cream reward!
Famers Market Games For Kids
Another fun idea we have tried is a Farmers Market scavenger hunt like this one:
- Find one red fruit that you haven’t had before.
- Find one green veggie that you haven’t had before.
- Taste an organic strawberry, and a conventionally-grown (non-organic) one. Which one tastes better?
- Find a red food that is bigger than your fist. What is it?
- Ask 3 people if a tomato is a fruit or a vegetable. What do you think it is? (It’s a fruit!)
- Find a purple food with an interesting shape. What is it?
- Find 3 kinds of baked items. What did you find?
- Find something that grows on a vine/underground/tree.
- Ask 4 farmers what they like to grow the most. What is their favorite fruit or vegetable?
- Find peaches sold by 2 different vendors. What is the difference in price?
- What is the most interesting thing that you found for sale today at the Farmer’s Market?
This would be my answer to the last question:
Anyone up for some Frog Jam?
More Farmers Market Information
There are so many great Farmer’s Markets across the US. This site has a great tool for finding ones in your local area.
You might also be interested in these other veggie/ Farmers Market posts:
- Garden Canning Series – Strawberry Preserves
- Support Your Local Farm Markets
- Hide Veggies in Your Kids Food: Green Spinach Smoothie Recipe
Spring and Summer Fun!
Looking for more ideas for fun in the sun? Here are some of our favorite warm weather activities, crafts, and recipes:
What’s your favorite thing to see or do at your local Farmers Market?