Summer and fall are great times to be in Hyde Park, if only because of the two weekly farmers markets brimming with amazing, organic and inexpensive produce. Go to one of these markets, take home a bundle of healthy, tasty produce, and try making something new!
61st Street Farmers Market
-Saturdays, 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
-61st Street and Blackstone Ave.
-Open from the first week of May through December
This great market brings healthy produce to Woodlawn, an area that was marked out as one of America’s “food deserts” in Mari Galligher’s “The Impact of Food Deserts on Public Health in Chicago.” The market includes several stands that proffer organic fruits and vegetables, and also organic meats and homemade cheeses, eggs, flowers, and baked goods, as well as hand-made soaps and candles. I had forgotten what real farm eggs both look like and taste like before buying a dozen and taking them home to poach: the yolks of these tiny eggs are actually deep orange and are incredibly delicious.
Aside from the great produce, this market is a fun excuse for the community to come together. On nice Saturdays people come to relax, eat, shop, play music and enjoy each other’s company. For more information about the market, go to http://www.experimentalstation.org/about/farmersmarket.
Harper Square Farmers Market
-Thursdays, 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
-52nd Place and Harper
-Open from early June through October
This market is a bit smaller than the 61st market, but the produce is outstanding and the selections vary each week due to what is in season. Sometimes there is a vendor who just sells different types of mushrooms, and another vendor who specializes in garlic. Don’t think there are different types of garlic? Buy a few heads and find out! This market is especially convenient to those who live in northern Hyde Park/Kenwood and who have Thursday mornings free. For some reviews of this market, go to: http://www.sustainlane.com/reviews/hyde-park-chicago-farmers-market/US8FR9731TQ98XCSBZPQ79KZ2O3A.
Don’t live in Hyde Park? No worries! Since I live here, these are the markets I am familiar with, but there are many, many farmers markets all over Chicago. For a listing by neighborhood check out: http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local&id=6812915