The Weblog

This page contains news, event information, and other items added by the market managers, including the weekly availability email. Be sure to check back regularly!



 
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Market Open for May 16


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

What a beautiful weekend for gardening, finally! Well, excepting the small but fierce hail storm that came through yesterday. It missed me, but parts of the athens area had large hail, the size of a quarter, for a few minutes. Myself, I finally cleared out 18 of my raised beds and got most of my seedlings in just as it got too dark to see tonight. Hopefully, by next weekend, I’ll have the whole summer garden in. It looks great — not a weed in sight! That’ll last about three days, if I’m lucky.

I made a few improvements to the website this week. One, that I tested out last week, is a reminder email for those with orders that should hit your mailbox by Thursday morning. Every week I’ve got a big list of people to call by seven thirty, and quite a few of them tell me they completely forgot about their order. A few each week I can not reach, and they end up having to pay for an order they didn’t get. I’m hoping this reminder email will cut down on some of that, and it’ll give me a chance to put in special notices about weather, guest farmers, and so on without bothering all four thousand people with accounts.

Another thing I’ve done is make the “Order History” box on The Market page much more useful. You could always see your last ten orders, and add items you had ordered before to your cart. It only ordered one, though, so if you habitually ordered four dozen eggs, you had to click the button four times. Now it will add the same number to your account that you had ordered before. Even better, there’s a link to duplicate the entire order (what’s available this week, anyway) with one click. We can’t really have standing orders, since the availability changes so much from week to week, but this is the next best thing. Make one order with the things you order every week, and next week (and each week thereafter) just duplicate it and check out. It doesn’t matter how many orders you place — we’ll add everything up together on Thursday, but each order is still a separate thing in the records, so you can just have one with your staples that you repeat, and then other orders with things you just want this week. Take a look — you may not use it at all, but for some people this will really come in handy.

Every so often, I get an inquiry from someone wanting to put in some time on a farm, to get some experience in before going off to start a farm of their own. We have such an opportunity now. One of our area’s most well-known blueberry farms, Jim’s Farm, is in desperate need of one very dedicated individual for the next six to eight weeks to manage the harvest and marketing of berries. It’ll be hard work, but only for six weeks or so. If this sounds like something you want to do, please contact Farmer Jim at jimsfarm@windstream.net. This season might be depending on you.

We’ve got our third free Farmer for a Day event this Saturday at Covenant Valley Farm. See the details below. It’s free, including a meal, but you need to reserve your spot this week to get in. We’d love to see you there!

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

May 18th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Covenant Valley Farms This is the third FREE event in the Farmer for a Day Tour Series of 2013. We arranged five tours this year, scheduled around the needs of various small farms. Each one is unique. Be sure to get your event ticket today! Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for an “outing” as this would stress the livestock and disrupt work. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and a nutritious lunch is also provided. Farmers will have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, feel free to bring your own water bottle and dishes. Covenant Valley Farms Tour Event Nolan and Annie Kennedy own Covenant Family Farms in Colbert – Oglethorpe County. They produce grass fed Angus cattle, eggs, pork, honey, handcrafted lip balms, beeswax candles, and Georgia pecan honey butter. The day will shape up like this: 1:45-2:00 Meet and greet 2:00-4:00 assist with general gardening chores including weeding, building raised beds, livestock care and feeding, and working with honeybees. 4:00-5:00 Farm Tour 5:00-6:00 Light supper including grass fed Angus sliders and vegetarian options. Opportunity to shop from the farm store for honey, lip balms, candles, beef, pork, eggs, and honey butter. NOTE: Honeybees on the property. Bring epipen if needed, and avoid wearing black. We hope you can join us for a fun day of volunteering, meeting new friends, delicious food, and fresh farm air! This is a free event! You will be contacted to confirm registration and be given the address and directions. You will be asked for a phone number in case of emergency cancellation. If you do not get a confirmation, please email Cathy Payne. For questions, contact Cathy Payne, event coordinator, at broadriverpastures@gmail.com or 706-283-7946.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market on Saturday has opened for the season on Saturday mornings and Wednesday afternoons (see their website for info). The Watkinsville market has opened as well. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

All of these other markets are separate from ALG (even the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Market Open for May 9


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

Hello, all! I’m a bit under the weather, so I’ll be quick. The market is open and ready for your orders! We have the first of the strawberries, and the asparagus is really coming in strong. The cold wet spring has been a wonderful change from recent years, but it has slowed everything way down. But if you love spring veggies, now is the time to eat your fill. One of my favorite underused spring veggies is bok choy, and you’ll find some new recipes using it on the recipe portion of the website. Have a recipe for anything from our market you’d like to share? Please do!

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

May 18th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Coventant Valley Farms This is the third FREE event in the Farmer for a Day Tour Series of 2013. We arranged five tours this year, scheduled around the needs of various small farms. Each one is unique. Be sure to get your event ticket today! Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for an “outing” as this would stress the livestock and disrupt work. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and a nutritious lunch is also provided. Farmers will have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, feel free to bring your own water bottle and dishes. Covenant Valley Farms Tour Event Nolan and Annie Kennedy own Covenant Family Farms in Colbert – Oglethorpe County. They produce grass fed Angus cattle, eggs, pork, honey, handcrafted lip balms, beeswax candles, and Georgia pecan honey butter. The day will shape up like this: 1:45-2:00 Meet and greet 2:00-4:00 assist with general gardening chores including weeding, building raised beds, livestock care and feeding, and working with honeybees. 4:00-5:00 Farm Tour 5:00-6:00 Light supper including grass fed Angus sliders and vegetarian options. Opportunity to shop from the farm store for honey, lip balms, candles, beef, pork, eggs, and honey butter. NOTE: Honeybees on the property. Bring epipen if needed, and avoid wearing black. We hope you can join us for a fun day of volunteering, meeting new friends, delicious food, and fresh farm air! This is a free event! You will be contacted to confirm registration and be given the address and directions. You will be asked for a phone number in case of emergency cancellation. If you do not get a confirmation, please email Cathy Payne. For questions, contact Cathy Payne, event coordinator, at broadriverpastures@gmail.com or 706-283-7946.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market on Saturday has opened for the season on Saturday mornings and Wednesday afternoons (see their website for info). The Watkinsville market has opened as well. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

All of these other markets are separate from ALG (even the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Market Open for May 2


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

I was hoping to get into the garden this weekend, but the rain at my house just didn’t let me. I woke up on Friday to a pretty heavy frost that caught me off guard — I barely got my daughter to the bus stop in time after I scraped off the windshield, and when I got back I looked after my many tomato plants sitting out waiting to get into the ground. They all got burnt back, and I lost a few, but most of them will pull through. Still, we had it better than some this weekend. There was a tornado, bringing heave hail with it, that went through the counties just south of Athens, ending somewhere near Washington. I haven’t heard of damage yet, but I had friends out caught in the hail, and our ALG growers in the path have all reported shaken but ok.

The rain did stop long enough yesterday for our second Farmer for a Day event to proceed unhindered at Blue Moon Farm in Madison County. Cathy Payne, organizer of our events this year, reports that “the weather was cool and cloudy, perfect for weeding. We covered several rows of blueberry plants, leaving them well weeded and properly mulched, in less than 2 hours. We enjoyed new connections and camaraderie over the work, meal, and farm tour.” Photos of the event can be found on Facebook here. Our next tour will be held at Covenant Valley Farm in Oglethorpe County on Saturday, May 18th in the afternoon (later in the day than most of our events). They produce grass fed Angus cattle, eggs, pork, honey, handcrafted lip balms, beeswax candles, and Georgia pecan honey butter for ALG and other markets, and the event will include a supper featuring grass fed Angus sliders and vegetarian options. The event is free, but spots will fill fast, so be sure to make your reservations by adding them to your order. You’ll find them in the “Event Reservations” category.

Looking through the event listings, I see one very rare thing: for maybe the first time ever, there is a surplus of eggs. This will not last long, so if you go through a lot of eggs, you may want to stock up now. These fresh eggs can easily last a couple months in your refrigerator (I only today opened a carton I bought right before Easter), so don’t be afraid to buy several weeks’ worth now while the surplus is here. I know I’ll be taking advantage of the savings, and might get several extra dozen just to pickle for eating later in the summer when the weather gets hot and the hens just don’t feel like laying.

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

May 18th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Coventant Valley Farms This is the third FREE event in the Farmer for a Day Tour Series of 2013. We arranged five tours this year, scheduled around the needs of various small farms. Each one is unique. Be sure to get your event ticket today! Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for an “outing” as this would stress the livestock and disrupt work. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and a nutritious lunch is also provided. Farmers will have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, feel free to bring your own water bottle and dishes. Covenant Valley Farms Tour Event Nolan and Annie Kennedy own Covenant Family Farms in Colbert – Oglethorpe County. They produce grass fed Angus cattle, eggs, pork, honey, handcrafted lip balms, beeswax candles, and Georgia pecan honey butter. The day will shape up like this: 1:45-2:00 Meet and greet 2:00-4:00 assist with general gardening chores including weeding, building raised beds, livestock care and feeding, and working with honeybees. 4:00-5:00 Farm Tour 5:00-6:00 Light supper including grass fed Angus sliders and vegetarian options. Opportunity to shop from the farm store for honey, lip balms, candles, beef, pork, eggs, and honey butter. NOTE: Honeybees on the property. Bring epipen if needed, and avoid wearing black. We hope you can join us for a fun day of volunteering, meeting new friends, delicious food, and fresh farm air! This is a free event! You will be contacted to confirm registration and be given the address and directions. You will be asked for a phone number in case of emergency cancellation. If you do not get a confirmation, please email Cathy Payne. For questions, contact Cathy Payne, event coordinator, at broadriverpastures@gmail.com or 706-283-7946.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market on Saturday has opened for the season on Saturday mornings and Wednesday afternoons (see their website for info). The Watkinsville market has opened as well. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

All of these other markets are separate from ALG (even the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Market Open for April 25


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

I’m well behind in my garden, the remnants of Boann’s Banks farm, but today I managed to get a bit done in preparation for planting all the tomato plants I bought through ALG last week. All 52 tomato plants. It was down to the upper thirties at night a few days ago, and it’ll be down near 40 for the next few nights, but I’m hoping right after that it’ll be safe for me to get them all in the ground. In the meantime, I’ll be browsing through all the live plants offered again this week, both for any tomato varieties I may have missed, but also for herbs and other vegetables I want to plant alongside them.

This coming Saturday is our second Farmer for a Day event, being held at Blue Moon Farms in Madison County. See the information below, and then reserve your free spot by adding reservations to your order for the week. Just look in the “Event Reservations” category!

Looking through the event listings, I see one very rare thing: for maybe the first time ever, there is a surplus of eggs. This will not last long, so if you go through a lot of eggs, you may want to stock up now. These fresh eggs can easily last a couple months in your refrigerator (I only today opened a carton I bought right before Easter), so don’t be afraid to buy several weeks’ worth now while the surplus is here. I know I’ll be taking advantage of the savings, and might get several extra dozen just to pickle for eating later in the summer when the weather gets hot and the hens just don’t feel like laying.

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

April 27th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Blue Moon Farms This is the second event in our 2013 series of 5 Farmer for a Day Tours, to be held Saturday, April 27 from 10-2 in Madison County. Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, pruners or lopping shears, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for a day in the country. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and lunch is provided. Farmers may have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, bring your own water bottle and dishes with you. Blue Moon Farms is Certified Naturally Grown and includes 60 acres where the family lives plus two 40 acre pine forests. They maintain natural habitats to support native wildlife. We will be doing a variety of chores including weeding and mulching blueberries, weeding and thinning onions, removing and replacing drip tape, and relocating mushroom logs. If time allows we will prepare seed beds. It is a family friendly event. The event will last from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM What you can expect: 9:30 AM check in, meet and greet 10:00-12:00 work session 12:00-12:45 lunch 12:45-2:00 Guided tour of the farm We are reserving 20 spots for the event. Don’t be left out! I will be taking names for a waiting list once all spots are claimed. Please note that you do not need to be a member of Athens Locally Grown to purchase an event ticket. Sign up for this free tour by adding reservations to your order (look in the “Event Reservations” category). For more information, contact Cathy Payne at broadriverpastures@gmail.com.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market on Saturday has opened for the season on Saturday mornings and Wednesday afternoons (see their website for info). The Watkinsville market has opened as well. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

All of these other markets are separate from ALG (even the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Market Open for April 18


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

The official average last day of frost (for Athens) arrives this week, and all of our growers have their gardens going full-tilt. It’s perhaps the busiest time of the year for them, for not only are they maintaining all of the spring veggies, but they’re also preparing and planting all of their summer seedlings for the months ahead. All of the area farmers markets are opening back up to great fanfare, and many people take that as a sign of the season only getting started. But for our growers, the season began months ago, and they’re burning the candles at both ends now to get everything done.

But thanks to their hard labors, we can eat really well, and we have multiple markets to shop from. So, when you see a farmer, weather at a market, or delivering to a store or restaurant, or at the hardware store, or wherever your paths cross, give them your thanks. You can’t imagine how much those thanks mean when they’re working in their gardens after dark, flashlights strapped to their heads, putting in another row of seedlings.

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

April 27th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Blue Moon Farms This is the second event in our 2013 series of 5 Farmer for a Day Tours, to be held Saturday, April 27 from 10-2 in Madison County. Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, pruners or lopping shears, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for a day in the country. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and lunch is provided. Farmers may have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, bring your own water bottle and dishes with you. Blue Moon Farms is Certified Naturally Grown and includes 60 acres where the family lives plus two 40 acre pine forests. They maintain natural habitats to support native wildlife. We will be doing a variety of chores including weeding and mulching blueberries, weeding and thinning onions, removing and replacing drip tape, and relocating mushroom logs. If time allows we will prepare seed beds. It is a family friendly event. The event will last from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM What you can expect: 9:30 AM check in, meet and greet 10:00-12:00 work session 12:00-12:45 lunch 12:45-2:00 Guided tour of the farm We are reserving 20 spots for the event. Don’t be left out! I will be taking names for a waiting list once all spots are claimed. Please note that you do not need to be a member of Athens Locally Grown to purchase an event ticket. Sign up for this free tour by adding reservations to your order (look in the “Event Reservations” category). For more information, contact Cathy Payne at broadriverpastures@gmail.com.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market on Saturday has opened for the season on Saturday mornings and Wednesday afternoons (see their website for info). The Watkinsville market has opened as well. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

All of these other markets are separate from ALG (even the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Market Open for April 11


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

Today was a beautiful day, perfect for working out in the garden. I’m way behind on mine, but the really good growing weather seems to hit my little patch of Franklin County about three weeks after most of the rest of you. Maybe next weekend I’ll carve out some time to spend carving out my raised beds from the winter weeds, and start getting my things in the ground. I was one of the founding farms of Athens Locally Grown, back in 2002, but these days I just keep a small garden. Some years it’s larger than others, but it seems like this will be one of those smaller years.

If you’ve been preparing your garden, or just thinking about starting one, be sure to check out all of the live plants offered by our growers through the market. Sure, you could run off to Home Depot and buy some mass-produced seedlings soaked in synthetic fertilizers and sprayed with fumigants, but you can also get hardy seedlings grown by the same people cultivating plants for their own vegetable beds, free of synthetic chemicals.

It’s still a little early to safely put out summer plants like tomatoes, peppers, squash, and eggplants, unless you protect them. The average last frost date for Athens is still a week away (and a month away for me). The weather forecast for the next week looks pretty good, but right now the low for next Saturday is projected to be 43 degrees. That’s well above freezing, but quite cold for tropical tomatoes. If you want to get a jump on things, just use row covers or other protection to keep the cold nights from stunting them.

Why am I encouraging you to grow your own food when I’m in the business of helping growers sell you food they grow? For one, studies have shown (and my own experience confirms) that people who grow their own gardens tend to actually increase their yearly purchases at their local farmers markets. Once they take an interest their food so strong that their begin growing what they can, they find that they can rely even more on their local growers for things that they used to get at the grocery store. And besides, my goal is for every community to become less reliant on food grown elsewhere and shipped in from long distances. And you having your own little patch of garden in your yard is a big step in helping Athens do just that.

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

April 27th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Blue Moon Farms This is the second event in our 2013 series of 5 Farmer for a Day Tours, to be held Saturday, April 27 from 10-2 in Madison County. Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, pruners or lopping shears, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for a day in the country. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and lunch is provided. Farmers may have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, bring your own water bottle and dishes with you. Blue Moon Farms is Certified Naturally Grown and includes 60 acres where the family lives plus two 40 acre pine forests. They maintain natural habitats to support native wildlife. We will be doing a variety of chores including weeding and mulching blueberries, weeding and thinning onions, removing and replacing drip tape, and relocating mushroom logs. If time allows we will prepare seed beds. It is a family friendly event. The event will last from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM What you can expect: 9:30 AM check in, meet and greet 10:00-12:00 work session 12:00-12:45 lunch 12:45-2:00 Guided tour of the farm We are reserving 20 spots for the event. Don’t be left out! I will be taking names for a waiting list once all spots are claimed. Please note that you do not need to be a member of Athens Locally Grown to purchase an event ticket. Sign up for this free tour by adding reservations to your order (look in the “Event Reservations” category). For more information, contact Cathy Payne at broadriverpastures@gmail.com.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market on Saturday has opened for the season on Saturday (see their website for info) as has the Watkinsville market. AFM’s Wednesday downtown market will open later in the spring. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

All of these other markets are separate from ALG (even the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Market Open for April 4


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

I fully admit to eating far more chocolate than is good for me this weekend. But I did it for my kids, so that they wouldn’t suffer the ill effects of chocolate overload. Truth be told, I didn’t even make it through typing that sentence without stopping for a Cadbury chocolate creme egg. I’m happy to report that there are over 1100 healthy locally-grown items listed this week, however, so all of us candy over-indulgers will have no trouble getting back on the wagon.

Those of you who have been missing the variety of cheeses we’ve had in the past will be happy to see that South Georgia’s Flat Creek Lodge has joined us, and have listed 22 varieties of their cheese. They’re a bit far for a day trip, but since our more local dairies can’t fill the considerable demand for good cheese, I’ve let Flat Creek Lodge in. I’m eager to try their varieties — I’ve heard good things!

This coming Saturday is the annual Old Timey Seed Swap being held out at Grove Creek Farm in Oglethorpe County. I go most years, and have a lot of fun. You can learn more about the event and get directions here at Grove Creek Farm’s website.

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

April 27th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Blue Moon Farms This is the second event in our 2013 series of 5 Farmer for a Day Tours, to be held Saturday, April 27 from 10-2 in Madison County. Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, pruners or lopping shears, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for a day in the country. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and lunch is provided. Farmers may have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, bring your own water bottle and dishes with you. Blue Moon Farms is Certified Naturally Grown and includes 60 acres where the family lives plus two 40 acre pine forests. They maintain natural habitats to support native wildlife. We will be doing a variety of chores including weeding and mulching blueberries, weeding and thinning onions, removing and replacing drip tape, and relocating mushroom logs. If time allows we will prepare seed beds. It is a family friendly event. The event will last from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM What you can expect: 9:30 AM check in, meet and greet 10:00-12:00 work session 12:00-12:45 lunch 12:45-2:00 Guided tour of the farm We are reserving 20 spots for the event. Don’t be left out! I will be taking names for a waiting list once all spots are claimed. Please note that you do not need to be a member of Athens Locally Grown to purchase an event ticket. Sign up for this free tour by adding reservations to your order (look in the “Event Reservations” category). For more information, contact Cathy Payne at broadriverpastures@gmail.com.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market opens for the season on Saturday (see their website for info) as does the Watkinsville market. The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there. Most of the other area markets are preparing to open back up as well very soon!

Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Availability for March 28


Athens Locally Grown

How to contact us:
Our Website: athens.locallygrown.net
On Twitter: @athlocallygrown
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/athenslocallygrown
On Thursdays: Here’s a map.

Market News

After a week of sunny skies and days in the seventies, this week reminded us how volatile the spring weather can be. We started our summer-long series of “Farmer for a Day” events yesterday in the cold rain at Long Shot Farm, and in spite of the weather it was a great event. The twelve volunteers who came were happy and eager to help and learn, putting in about 1000 asparagus crowns in their beds. People had time to visit and share their interest in attending and the free lunch was appreciated. Everyone went home with a generous bag of asparagus roots to plant and the confidence to do it. Even with the rain, they got everything in the ground within a 75-90 minute window. Dee and Rochelle Long were so glad to have the crowns in — it would have been a tremendous amount of work for them to have to do it all be themselves, especially with the weather. The rain was gone by the time the after-lunch farm tour began, and turned into a pleasant spring day. Organizer Cathy Payne has 45 photos up on the Farmer for a Day Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/FarmerForADayToursWithAthensLocallyGrown along with the schedule and photos for future events.

There has been a lot of questions recently about the heavy use of plastic bags at Athens Locally Grown, perhaps spurred by events like the screening of Bag It! during this week’s EcoFocus Film Festival at Cine. While we do have less packaging than most grocery store items, there is still more than we’d ideally like to see. There are several unavoidable reasons for this, however. First and foremost, we are not a licensed grocery store or food handling facility. Holding the market’s pickup in the back workroom of a bicycle repair shop is kind of a giveaway on that, but besides the location itself, there are a lot of food regulations that we are not subject to that places like the Daily Grocery are. We don’t have stainless steel sinks and counters, monitored food cold storage refrigeration units, certified scales, inspected areas where we can subdivide cases of produce, and all of the rest. The growers do have certified scales, and those who sell products that require licenses do have inspected facilities as well. They’re able to harvest and immediately pack your items just for you in a manner that the state ag and health departments are happy with, and we don’t have to get in-between the grower and you. Most of the growers are packaging conscious just like you, and try to use the minimum amount possible, and packages other than plastic when possible and appropriate. (There are a few growers that seem to use a ridiculous amount of plastic, but they’re the exception.)

Still, there can be a lot of plastic going home with you. We’ve looked into other things, like buying all-biodegradable bags for the growers, but that’s still far too expensive. It’s getting better over time, but it would add about 10% to the prices of everything, and we’d have to buy in advance a semi-truck load to get it that cheap. It’s not all terrible, though. When you walk up to our tables on Thursday, you’ll notice a tall white bin for recycling your plastic bags. We are one of the few locations in North Georgia where you can recycle plastic bags and wrap. Paper bags and cardboard egg cartons can be recycled through the city. Rigid plastic containers and egg cartons can also be recycled through the city. All of the rest of the plastic can be brought to us (so long as it’s reasonably clean — if the contents turned to liquid in the back of your veggie crisper, keep that one) and we take it all to be recycled into things like playground equipment, faux lumber, and lots of other innovative products that reduce the overall need for freshly pumped petroleum. It’s not the best possible answer, but short of having your own garden and growing everything you get from us, it’s the best option available to us.

Thanks so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!

Upcoming Local Food Events

Starting Your Own Food Business: A panel discussion by the creators of King of Pops, High Road Craft Ice and Sorbet and others about what it takes to turn your favorite recipes into a successful food business. They’ll cover everything from navigating the regulatory landscape to growing your brand. Free, no registration required. 1 to 2 p.m. Monday March 25th, Tate Center Theater. Part of Thinc Week at UGA. For more information about Thinc Week visit www.thinc.uga.edu.

April 27th: Be a Farmer For A Day at Blue Moon Farms This is the second event in our 2013 series of 5 Farmer for a Day Tours, to be held Saturday, April 27 from 10-2 in Madison County. Each event will offer you a chance to experience real work on the farm, so come prepared to work! The work session will last for two hours. You may want to bring your own work gloves, weeding or digging tools, pruners or lopping shears, etc. if you have them. Be sure to prepare for the weather appropriately and dress for getting dirty or muddy. You will be in an agricultural setting and can expect sun, rain, bugs, wildlife, dogs, electric fences, pets, and farm animals to be part of the experience. Do not bring your dog with you for a day in the country. Please plan to closely supervise your children during all activities. Water will be provided during the work session and lunch is provided. Farmers may have products available for purchase at the event, so you may want to bring cash/checks and a cooler with you. If you have special dietary needs, plan accordingly to bring those with you. To save resources, bring your own water bottle and dishes with you. Blue Moon Farms is Certified Naturally Grown and includes 60 acres where the family lives plus two 40 acre pine forests. They maintain natural habitats to support native wildlife. We will be doing a variety of chores including weeding and mulching blueberries, weeding and thinning onions, removing and replacing drip tape, and relocating mushroom logs. If time allows we will prepare seed beds. It is a family friendly event. The event will last from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM What you can expect: 9:30 AM check in, meet and greet 10:00-12:00 work session 12:00-12:45 lunch 12:45-2:00 Guided tour of the farm We are reserving 20 spots for the event. Don’t be left out! I will be taking names for a waiting list once all spots are claimed. Please note that you do not need to be a member of Athens Locally Grown to purchase an event ticket. Sign up for this free tour by adding reservations to your order (look in the “Event Reservations” category). For more information, contact Cathy Payne at broadriverpastures@gmail.com.

Other Area Farmers Markets

The Athens Farmers Market has closed for the winter for one more week. You can watch for news during the offseason on their website. Most of the other area markets are also all closed for the season too, but all of them will be opening back up very soon! The Washington-Wilkes Farmer’s Market in Washington is open every Saturday 9-12 behind the Washington Courthouse, and several ALG vendors also sell there.

Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!

We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!

Several food events coming up soon


Hello, all! There are several food events coming up in the next few days you may be interested in, and I didn’t want to wait until Sunday night to send them to you.

First, there is a new 2-day workshop to help food entrepreneurs in Georgia learn what they need to know to put a food product into the marketplace. Participants will receive training in what they need to do to produce a safe product, options in processing and packaging, how to find funding and how to write a food safety plan. They will also have the opportunity to ask questions and interact with experts from UGA Food Science Department and the Center for Agribusiness Development, the Georgia Center for Innovation in Agribusiness, Georgia Department of Agriculture, FDA and the food industry during each two-day workshop. There are two session being held in Athens:

  • Tuesday & Wednesday, April 9-10, UGA, Athens (deadline to register is March 23)
  • Tuesday & Wednesday, Sept. 24-25, UGA, Athens (deadline to register is Sept. 10)

The online registration site is https://estore.uga.edu/C21653_ustores/web/store_cat.jsp?CATID=205&STOREID=42 To register by check or money order, print and fill out the registration blank, then mail to the address on the form. These workshops are co-sponsored by the Center for Innovation in Agribusiness in Tifton (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Center-of-Innovation-for-Agribusiness/41061818742). Lunches and the workshop notebook will be provided.

Integrating Food Systems and Community Development: Steve Nygren, founder of South Fulton County eco-community Serenbe, will talk about how including farmers and farms into a residential setting helps build stronger, healthier communities. He’ll also be talking about his inspiration for Serenbe, the hurdles he had to overcome to found the community and the benefits community members have seen. Free, no registration required. For more information about Serenbe visit www.serenbecommunity.com. For more information about the talk visit www.thinc.uga.edu or email jmerritt@uga.edu 6:30 p.m. , Monday March 25, Miller Learning Center UGA, Rm. 102

Starting Your Own Food Business: A panel discussion by the creators of King of Pops, High Road Craft Ice and Sorbet and others about what it takes to turn your favorite recipes into a successful food business. They’ll cover everything from navigating the regulatory landscape to growing your brand. Free, no registration required. 1 to 2 p.m. Monday March 25th, Tate Center Theater. Part of Thinc Week at UGA. For more information about Thinc Week visit www.thinc.uga.edu.

Thanks, and I’ll see many of you today at Ben’s Bikes!

Availability for March 21


Hello, all! This coming Saturday we kick off our monthly “Farmer for a Day” events at Long Shot Farms in Arnoldville. I’ll just repeat this blurb about the event and let you go right to ordering. See you Thursday!

March 23rd: Be a Farmer For A Day at Long Shot Farms Have you ever wanted to learn how to plant asparagus? How would you like to give it a go? Here is your chance to do it with no risk! Long Shot Farm in Arnoldsville, Oglethorpe County, is a new establishment focusing on Granax onions, tomatoes, and perennial blueberries and asparagus. It will take some time to establish their beds, and Rochelle Long needs your help. Come join a small group of volunteers to help plant asparagus. Participants will go home with asparagus crowns of their own while supplies last. The event will be held on Saturday, March 23 and will begin at 10:00 AM. You will spend two hours planting asparagus crowns into the prepared bed, enjoy a free lunch around noon, and tour the farm after lunch. Sign up for this free tour by adding reservations to your order (look in the “Event Reservations” category). For more information, contact Cathy Payne at broadriverpastures@gmail.com.