by Joni Astrup
The Elk River Farmers Market will close out the 2021 season on Thursday, Oct. 7, with a full lineup of vendors, a special performance by the RSVP Bookends Readers Theatre and live music.
Karen Wingard, who coordinates the market for the city, said many people take advantage of the last farmers market to stock up on their favorite items.
“It is always a bittersweet market day when it is the last one,” she said. “The season has been wonderful and we did see continued growth in both shoppers and vendors.”
The market will be open from 3 to 7 p.m. in the northwest corner of the parking lot behind Kemper Drug in downtown Elk River.
As the season draws to a close, Wingard said the produce vendors still have a great variety of produce including root vegetables and squash. A new apple orchard vendor — Gilchrist Orchards — has been a big hit with their 12 varieties of apples, she said.
Svihel Farm still has everbearing strawberries that are picked fresh from the field before the market.
She said they have welcomed some new craft vendors for the last few weeks of the market as well.
“Many people are enjoying some early Christmas shopping and the selection is amazing. If you are looking for unique, handmade gifts, this is the place to check out,” Wingard said.
Other notes about the last market of the season:
• Wingard said due to the great participation of sponsors, the funds have allowed them to continue the Power of Produce kids program through the end of the season. Normally it is only an eight-week program. Kids ages 3-12 can stop by and pick up a free $2 produce token.
• Oct 7 is Senior Thursday, so all seniors 55 and older will receive $3 in market tokens to spend on anything at the market.
• The last market will feature a special performance by the RSVP Bookends Readers Theatre group from 4-4:30 p.m. Children can come and listen to some favorite classic stories read by the Bookends.
• Lyzander will perform live music at the market.
• The frequent shopper program will continue, and all loyalty check-ins are saved for the following year.
• Vendor applications for 2022 will be available in January. The tentative season dates will be June 16 to Oct. 6, 2022.