Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Webb City Sentinel - 7-17-09

My husband, Phil, said he got the best sweet corn of the season Tuesday. He likes a well-filled tender ear of corn that he doesn’t have to share with corn worms and that’s what he got from the Circle E Ranch. The Eichers have been planting corn several times a month since spring and hope to have it most market days.

The blackberries have been wonderful this year and are in good supply. And cantaloupe is in season. Several of our growers are bringing it, but Hector Troyer wowed us Tuesday with over 100. Every one of them sold.

Saturday is our Attack of the Giant Zucchini Day. We’re looking for the biggest zucchini in the area and I know of several farmers who have been tending what they hope is a prizewinner. Dalton Honsinger, our little lemonade seller, described in detail to me Tuesday his strategy: careful watering and daily inspection for any bugs trying to get an early taste. Everyone is welcome to enter the contest. The weigh-in will be at 10:30 and the winner gets fame, glory and $20 in market tokens.
Other zucchini activities include free samples of zucchini cake made by Hazel’s Bakery. We’ll also have a kids’ craft table where kids (and adults) can release their inner zucchini. There will be wheels to make zucchini cars and pipe cleaners, toothpicks and other supplies to create aliens, fish, and whatever else the young imagination can come up with.

Other Saturday activities include a bake sale by the Chief Sarcoxie Days Committee and breakfast of biscuits, gravy and sausage. The ever-popular Ninth Hour Quartet performs. The monthly Art at the Market is this Saturday. We are expecting six artists ranging from painters to jewelry makers to potters. They’ll be in the south pavilion.

Finally, there will be a drawing for $20 worth of market tokens so even those of us without gardens have a chance for a prize.
Speaking of gardens or the lack thereof, while May Lassiter was waiting for the market to open Tuesday, she told me that friends asked her if she still gardened. “Why, I live too close to the farmers market to garden!” My feeling exactly.

Today, Jack and Lee Ann Sours perform traditional music. Lunch is chicken salad, potato salad, cole slaw, pudding & drink for $6.

Next Tuesday the Webb City High School Band Boosters benefit from Cooking for a Cause and Rob Pommert plays music of the Beatles and Sinatra and lots of other favorites, as well as classical guitar.

Be sure and look for our newest Tuesday vendor, Darren Swartz of Walnut, Kansas. Swartz's Locally Grown Produce is Certified Naturally Grown, which is a label for small farmers that grow using organic methods but do not participate in the USDA certified organic program. The program includes an on-line application process, annual farm inspection and random pesticide testing.

Darren considers himself a steward of his farm, caring for the woods, the soil, the air and the water, and striving to leave the land better than he found it. In 2004, his farm received the Kansas Wildlife Habitat Conservation Award.

Next Saturday is our Tomato Day (we can’t have any more TomatoFests. Some guy in Carmel, California threatened to sue us if we continued using the name because he had patented it. He thinks people will confuse us with them. Hmmmm.) Anyway, if you’re a gardener, bring your best, biggest, smallest or weirdest tomato to market by 9:15 on Saturday, July 25. Judging starts at 9:30. Our judges this year are Mike Wiggins of Granny Shaffers, Chef Scott Teal of the Holiday Inn, Vicky Fuller of the Southwest Area Career Center, and Mike Pound of the Joplin Globe. Our thanks to Granny Shaffers for underwriting our prizes of market tokens in each category.

It’s a great time to visit the market. See you there!