Spring Brings Local Market to Town 5

From Farm-To-Table

The Hendersonville Farmers Market will begin its ninth season this coming spring. Located at 300 Indian Lake Blvd., the farmers market brings together local vendors in a fun and vibrant atmosphere.

Cheryl Puryear, market manager, says the location of the market at The Streets of Indian Lake mall serves as a great location with easy access, parking and other amenities close by. Puryear has been the market manager since 2012 and says the upcoming market will be her sixth season.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the local farmers, artisan, craft and small-business vendors over the years, as well as the customers,” she says.

Puryear shared several of the original vendors will be returning for this season’s market, but there will also be new participants as well. The majority of vendors at the market are located in Middle Tennessee, but according to Puryear, there are a few exceptions. The Peach Truck comes from Georgia; Virgin Bay Seafood get their wild-caught salmon from Alaska but are local to Tennessee; and Laurel Mountain Family Farm which provides beef, veggies, goat’s milk soap, pork and bread hails from Crossville, Tennessee, located two hours east of Hendersonville.

“Our farm vendors include longtime farmers, but the trend is that more professionals in other areas are either retiring to become farmers, completely changing their lifestyles to take up farming or are adding part-time farming to embrace a healthier lifestyle for themselves and their families,” she says, explaining why she believes the farmers market has been such a success and why vendors keep coming back every year.

She also notes people are choosing to raise their own food because of the concern over industrial farming and the increased awareness of healthy eating. By raising their own meats and growing their own produce, farmers can ensure the food they are selling is as clean and healthy as possible.

“Many of our customers have indicated they have a special interest in getting to know who their farmers are, where their food comes from and how it is raised,” Puryear says. She also says all of the produce available at the farmers market is marked as homegrown or its origin farm is noted.

The farmer’s market also hosts a Family Fun Day which occurs on the last Saturday of each month, as well as National Farmers Market week and special themed markets. Guests can expect live music and family centered activities.

Puryear says the community can learn more about the farmers market online. The market’s Facebook page—search Hendersonville Famers Market—is a good way for customers to check in and see what is happening and which vendors to check out. The Streets of Indian Lake website, StreetsOfIndianLake.com, and social media pages also relay market information to the community.

When asked what she would like to do with the market in the future, Puryear has a few ideas.

“I would like to add more music, healthy food preparation and cooking demonstrations, and more educational activities for kids and families to familiarize them with what goes into farming, to help healthy living take root in their lives.”

The market runs from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. every Saturday of the month starting May 20 and ending September 30.