More than 55 vendors offer their produce and crafts at the Farmers Market, which opens Saturday.
Lawrence's Farmers Market will bring fresh produce to downtown for its 23rd year.
The market opens for the season Saturday.
``What our customers like about the market is that the produce is fresh and locally grown, and we have a greater variety than you find at the ... grocery store,'' said Carol Thrasher, the market's organizer.
More than 55 vendors sell seasonal fruit and vegetables, baked goods and crafts. The market is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Saturday from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. through Nov. 14. The market is located in the 1000 block of Vermont.
This year, the market will hold new special events throughout the year to promote the produce in season. Almost a dozen special events are spread out through the growing season, from zucchini races to a tomato taste-off. Events include music, demonstrations and contests.
Another new addition to the market will be a Free State Brewery booth Saturday mornings to sell hot breakfast.
The market, sponsored by Downtown Lawrence Inc., is in its 23rd year.
Schedule of special events:
- May 9 -- Opening Day. Drawings for produce baskets, music.
- May 21 -- Salad Night. Salad and salad dressing tasting, demonstration with Wheatfield's chef.
- June 9 -- Kids' Night. Goat milking and petting, balloons, bubbles and kids' band.
- June 27 -- Midsummer Day. Educational displays, music, performers and flower wreaths.
- July 11 -- Celebrate Corn. Fresh-picked roasted corn sale. Demonstration from Free State chef and music.
- Aug. 8 -- Tomato Taste-off. Customer-grown tomato contest and prizes. Salsa demonstration and music.
- Aug. 22 -- Zucchini Races. Prizes for biggest, fastest, wackiest and artistic designs.
- Sept. 12 -- Sunflower Festival. Gardeners' sunflower contests, music and flower arranging demonstration.
- Sept. 26 -- Pepper Daze. Recipe contest, roasted chilies, ristras and chef's demonstration.
- Oct. 10 -- Farmers' Wives' Craft Day. Craft demonstrations, music and dancing.
- Oct. 17 -- Fall Harvest. Apple and pumpkin desserts with pastry chef, pumpkin carving demonstration, music and cider tasting.
- Oct. 31 -- Children in costume receive a free mini pumpkin.