September 11th Mercer Island Farmers Market Event News

9/11 Commemoration

To mark the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the attacks on September 11, 2011, the Mercer Island Farmers Market will be conducting a moment of silence at noon. We will be asking all vendors and community members to remember those who perished that day as well as all those who have fought and even given their lives since then defending our country.

If they are not on call at noon, the Mercer Island Fire Department will be joining the community at the MI Farmers Market to help us commemorate the occasion and the first responders, in particular, who lost their lives on 9/11.

Furthermore, Officer Rob Jira of the Mercer Island Police Department and several members of the Mercer Island Emergency Preparedness team of community volunteers will be in the market’s community service booth. Please take this time to learn more about what you can do to help be prepared in the event of an emergency.  Maybe even take this opportunity to sign up to become a volunteer yourself.

In addition to these solemn and serious activities, the Mercer Island Farmers Market will also have its usual roster of educational and entertaining activities.

Sampling Table

Susie Rosenstein (on left) and Mindy Landsman (in middle in brown top) preparing peaches and nectarines, which customers are sampling, at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Susie Rosenstein (on left) and Mindy Landsman (in middle in brown top) preparing peaches and nectarines, which customers are sampling, at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

From 10:30 to 12:30, Tanya Bednarski and Kari Fisher, who are dedicated volunteers and Mercer Island Farmers Market board members, will be sampling fresh produce from our vendors. While the type of produce hasn’t yet been selected as it will depend on what is freshest on Sunday, previous sampling tables have proven to be very educational by helping our customers learn about the different varieties of fruits and vegetables available from our farmers.

Be sure to stop by the sampling table not only to find out what Tanya and Kari will be sampling (apples? pears?), but also to learn more about it and the kinds of varieties available at the MIFM.

Chef Demo

Kurt Dammeier

Kurt Dammeier

Kurt Dammeier of Bennett’s Pure Food Bistro will be back at the Mercer Island Farmers Market to do another chef demo. His demo last year was one of our most popular events with dedicated fans of his cooking and restaurant showing up en masse.

In honor of Kurt’s chef demo, Maximus Minimus, which is a member of the Sugar Mountain family along with Bennett’s, will be at the Mercer Island Farmers Market at day. Maximus Minimus, for the uninitiated, is an extremely popular food truck that is the shape of a giant pig, which we are sure will prove to be a big hit with shoppers of all ages. Maximus Minimus is famous for their pulled-pork sandwiches friends and slaw. They also have veggie sandwiches as well as mac and cheese featuring what else but Beechers cheese, another member of the Sugar Mountain family.

Music

This Sunday Joe Ross and the Ain’t No Heaven Seven jazz band will be playing at the MI Farmers Market.

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August 28th Mercer Island Farmers Market Event Highlights: Music, Dancing, and Sampling

We had great weather for the August 28th Mercer Island Farmers Market—blue skies, 80°F temperatures…  And our customers came out in droves not only to purchase fresh, local fruits and vegetables, but also to be part of the fun.

Music and Dancing

Matt Lome performing and inspiring children to dance at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Matt Lome performing and inspiring children to dance at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Matt Lome, Mercer Island musician and teacher, returned for an encore performance on Sunday. The last time he played at the MIFM was June when the weather was unseasonably cool and he had to wear a heavy coat. He still did a wonderful job entertaining farmers, volunteers and shoppers.

This past Sunday with the great weather Matt was able to be much more relaxed and to wear shorts and a t-shirt. While the weather and his clothing might have been different, his music was as entertaining as ever. It even inspired some of our youngest shoppers to dance.

Sophie Feldman singing and playing the guitar at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Sophie Feldman singing and playing the guitar at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Heather Feldman)

Sophie Feldman, a student of Matt’s, was a big hit when she played at the MI Farmers Market in June. We are very happy that she agreed to return for an encore performance at the Mercer Island Farmers Market.

Children dancing to music played by Sophie Feldman at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Children dancing to music played by Sophie Feldman at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Heather Feldman)

We know that our customers were quite happy as well as she too inspired dancing among our youngest shoppers.

Thank you, Matt and Sophie, for coming back the MI Farmers Market and doing such a great job entertaining everyone. We hope that you will come back to play next market season.

Sampling Table: Peaches and Nectarines

Susie Rosenstein (on left) and Mindy Landsman (in middle in brown top) preparing peaches and nectarines, which customers are sampling, at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Susie Rosenstein (on left) and Mindy Landsman (in middle background in the brown top) preparing peaches and nectarines, which customers are eagerly sampling, at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Susie Rosenstein and Mindy Landsman, who are tireless Mercer Island Farmers Market volunteers as well as MIFM board members, put together a sampling table to help educate our shoppers about the different varieties of peaches and nectarines available.

Susie reports our customers had an overwhelmingly positive response to the sweet stone fruit. “The only other times I have experienced such interest in the sampling was when we were sampling ice cream and baked goods from the market. Tanya [Bednarski, Susie’s partner in organizing the sampling events] and I used to say that nothing attracts the crowds like sugar and butter. Well, I guess we need to add peaches and nectarines to our list.”

Mindy related that one customer said that the peaches were so sweet that “they tasted like candy” to which Susie replied, “healthy candy.” Well, I guess we know why the sampling of peaches and nectarines was so popular.

Thank you, Susie and Mindy, for organizing such a successful event.  And thank you Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA, Collins Family Orchard, Selah, WA, Martin Family Orchard, Orondo, WA, and Tonnemaker Family Orchard, Royal City, WA for donating peaches and nectarines for the sampling table. Billy’s donated Red Haven peaches; Collins donated Sun Crest peaches and Honey Blaze nectarines; Martin donated Rosa Hale peaches and Red Gold nectarines; and Tonnemaker donated Delps peaches and Yellow Flesh nectarines.

August 14th Mercer Island Farmers Market Event News

It’s the Mercer Island Farmers Market’s 3rd Anniversary this week. Our first market day ever was August 10, 2008. Please join us this Sunday to celebrate our farmers and community.

Sampling Table This Sunday: Ice Cream

Volunteers celebrating the Mercer Island Farmers Market's first anniversary on August 9, 2009.

Volunteers celebrating the Mercer Island Farmers Market's first anniversary on August 9, 2009. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

To help celebrate this occasion, MIFM volunteers and board members, Tanya Bednarski and Susie Rosenstein will be sampling ice cream on Sunday. The ice cream has been donated by our two ice cream vendors: Molly Moon Ice Cream, Seattle, WA and Parfait Artisan Organic Ice Cream, Seattle, WA. Everyone at the Mercer Island Farmers Market would like to offer a big “thank you” to Molly Moon and Parfait for their donations and support of our farmers market and community.

Tanya and Susie will be offering ice cream samples beginning at noon and will continue to offer them while supplies last, which shouldn’t be too long knowing how much our customers love ice cream.

Music: Strictly Fest 2011

Hula-Hoopers dancing to the Yaamba Marimba Band at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 31, 2011.

Hula-Hoopers dancing to the Yaamba Marimba Band at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 31, 2011. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

We are very excited that third annual Strictly Fest 2011 will be happening in Mercerdale Park at the same time at the Mercer Island Farmers Market.

Strictly Fest features many Mercer Island youth bands and seeks to raise money for the Mercer Island High School music programs.

The day’s program is:

11:00 ~ Kaze Daiko
11:45 ~ Ross Di Julio
12:30 ~ Electric Geometric Freak Test Recipients
1:45 ~ The Fool on the Hill
2:50 ~ The Good Time Police
4:20 ~ A Well Lit Room

Kids Table Activity: Kitchen Botany

Berry-ink painting at the Kids Table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 31, 2011.

Berry-ink painting at the Kids Table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 31, 2011. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

Once again super volunteer Judy Witmer has organized another great educational activity for our youngest shoppers. This Sunday the kids table activity will be “Kitchen Botany: Is it a fruit or veggie?”

July 24th Mercer Island Farmers Market Event News

The Mercer Island Farmers Market has another day of exciting events and activities planned for this Sunday’s market.

Chef Demo

Cover of "Tender: Farmers, Cooks, Eaters" cookbook.

Cover of "Tender: Farmers, Cooks, Eaters" cookbook. (Courtesy of Shin Shin Chez)

At noon, Chef Tom French will be doing a chef demonstration. Chef Tom plans to make dishes using ingredients from the vendors at our farmers market based on recipes from the cookbook “TENDER: Farmers, Cooks, Eaters.” “TENDER” was written by chef, restauranteur, and James-Beard-award-winner Tamara Murphy (the Elliott Bay Cafe, the Reading Room, and Terra Plata, opening in September). Chef Tom is the director of the Experience Food Project, which is dedicated to educating children about food and cooking as well as changing the meals available at public schools.

Copies of the cookbook “TENDER” will be available for purchase at the Mercer Island Farmers Market just after the chef demo. Part of the proceeds will go to support the Experience Food Project. Copies of this cookbook are also available for purchase at Mercer Island’s Island Books.

Music

Two Mercer Islanders, Audrey Miller and Eddie Bond, will be performing this Sunday at the MI Farmers Market.

Audrey Miller from 10 a.m. to noon

Ms. Miller, who just returned from performing in Belgium, is spending the summer teaching clarinet and performing around the Seattle area. She is a graduate of Mercer Island High School and has an undergraduate degree in clarinet performance from Western Washington University. Ms. Miller is currently a masters student at Florida State University, where she studies with internationally renowned clarinetist Frank Kowalsky.

Eddie Bond and Friends from 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Mr. Bond, like Ms. Miller, is from Mercer Island. He began playing piano at age 7, but picked up the guitar after hearing the space-age sound effects of Jimi Hendrix. He is now a Jazz Studies major at the University of Oregon. Mr. Bond has performed with a wide array of different musicians, in venues across the world, and has recorded two albums.  Eddie is also a visual artist and writer and is working on ways to incorporate these different skills into one unified project.

Sampling Table

Sign at the Sampling Table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 3, 2011.

Sign at the Sampling Table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 3, 2011. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., MIFM board members and long-time volunteers, Tanya Bednarski and Kari Fisher, will be sampling fresh, local raspberries and blueberries from our farmers. Be sure to stop by to get a taste of the many different varieties that are available at the Mercer Island Farmers Market. At last week’s market, our farmers brought several varieties of raspberries, including Cascade Dawn and Coho, as well as several varieties of strawberries including Rainier and Puget Summer. Here’s a chance to find your new favorite kind.

Kids Table

This week the theme of the kids table will be “Little Red Hen’s Wheat.” We can’t wait to see what educational activitity volunteer Judy Witmer has developed for our youngest customers.

Master Gardeners

The Master Gardeners answering a question at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on June 19, 2011.

The Master Gardeners answering a question at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on June 19, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

The Master Gardeners will be back for another week of expertly answering your questions about your plants, garden, and lawn.