Once the beautiful spring weather hits Des Moines, it’s time for the Downtown Farmers’ Market!
The Downtown Farmers’ Market is my favorite place for local veggies, cheese, wine, plants, yard art, popcorn, breakfast burritos…you name it! The Market spans nine city blocks in downtown Des Moines and runs from May 4 through October 26 – rain or shine! It’s crazy to think that back in 1976 when the market opened there were only 15 vendors and about 200 attendees. These days the market supports nearly 300 vendors and approximately 20,000 attendees each Saturday.
Here are a few of my favorite vendors (so far) in 2013:
Coyote Run Farm (Lacona, Iowa) – These farmers are tomato experts…all sizes, shapes, colors and flavors. Ask them anything about tomatoes and they’ll give you an answer! This is where we bought almost all of our tomato plants this year and they are looking great in our garden. Coyote Run Farm sells everything from Green Zebra to Pruden’s Purple tomatoes!
Breakfast Guys & Gals (Polk County) – One of the most underrated breakfast vendors at the Market. They specialize in made-to-order english muffin breakfast sandwiches that you can make your way with sausage, egg and all of the fixings. This vendor is a favorite of my husband, Levi, and I’s.
Tami’s Tarts (Polk County) – I just discovered Tami’s Tarts…and I’m in love! They have the best fresh fruit tarts (pictured to the right) and the panna cotta is to die for. Make sure you add almonds and maybe even a drizzle of honey on top of the panna cotta! The sweet and salty combination makes for the perfect Saturday morning snack.
Thelma’s Treats (Des Moines, Iowa) – Melt-in-your-mouth ice cream sandwiches with unique flavor combinations – PB Banana, Spicy Chocolate Chip, Snickerdoodle and more. Bonus: Dereck and his mother Lana, the owner’s of Thelma’s, are as genuine as they come!
Dog Gone It (Marion, Iowa) – Fashionable and sturdy dog collars, leads and harnesses that can be customized with your pooches name. They have cute patterns and bright colors. I’m thinking our little Boston Terrier, Sammy, would look great in one of these!
The Permanent Collection Letterpress (Des Moines, IA) - I’m completely obsessed with letterpress…and with The Permanent Collection. They specialize in vintage printing and contemporary design – what’s not to love? They offer cards, prints and custom printing. I will buy a print from them before the end of the summer!
Table Top Farm (Story County) – This vendor grows and sells organic veggies and herbs at the Market. We purchased a few tomato plants and onions for our garden from Table Top Farm! The grower was really knowledgeable and helpful when we were trying to decide what to purchase and how plant the veggies.
Make sure you check out The Dish on Des Moines’ Facebook page for more photos from the 2013 Downtown Farmers’ Market. And remember…shop local!