Glen Ellen gets farmers market
OLIVE AND VINE PROPRIETOR Catherine Venturini with chef Pamela Salza and some of the baked goods they plan to sell at the newly launched Glen Ellen farmers market.
Sonoma Valley will be home to a third farmers market when the Glen Ellen farmers market opens this Sunday, May 15, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Organized by Kelly Smith of Agricultural Community Events, which also hosts a farmers market in Marin County, the weekly event will take place in the parking lot at Jack London Village. She currently has spaces for 24 vendors, and is working this week to confirm the final list and see if there are any additional slots available. Smith added that many of the farmers will begin selling later in the year when more produce is available.
"It's early in the season so some of them may not be there for a month of so," she said.
Smith said the majority of the vendors come from Sonoma or Marin county, but added that for a more varied selection of produce, a handful of growers from the Central Valley will also participate "with some of the stone fruits that are harder to get in Sonoma County."
Two Moon Family Farm of Glen Ellen will be selling produce, Olive and Vine will sell baked goods, Nana Mae Organics will sell bottled juices and sauces until the heirloom apples and blackberries come into season.
Victorian Farmstead of Sebastopol will sell locally produced meat and Santa Rosa Fish will sell both fresh fish and grilled fish.
Crafters and artisans will also be in the mix selling handmade soaps and other items. The market hasn't even opened, but Smith is already thinking about expansion.
"We'll grow into the village, but for the time being, we'll just be in the north end of the parking lot," she said, adding, "We're always accepting vendor applications."
The vendors, many of which come from Glen Ellen, are eager to be a part of a market within their hometown.
"It's going to be great," said Catherine Venturini, chef and owner of Olive and Vine restaurant and catering, who said the market will pair nicely with her new business offering. "We're going to start serving brunch beginning next Sunday, the 22nd."
Venturini said she participated in the Tuesday night farmers market in Sonoma in prior years, and was disappointed when she was not selected as a vendor this year. She is hopeful the new Glen Ellen farmers market will grow in popularity during the summer season.
"It's pretty much on the main thoroughfare, so I think we'll have good exposure," Venturini said.
Smith said she planned the market for Sunday afternoons as a way to draw in not just locals but the tourist traffic that passes through the area on the way to and from wineries.
Smith said she was approached by a vendor who knew the proprietors of Jack London Village were eager to host a farmers market, but did not want to organize it themselves. She said her company, Agricultural Community Events, was looking to run more farmers markets in the North Bay and Glen Ellen was a good fit for what she wanted.
"The intimacy of a small town, I just love," she said. "We have great community support. It's a place where people can see their neighbors, chat, eat and enjoy."
Smith said she is hoping to have a website up by July but for now people can find updates on the market on Facebook under the Glen Ellen Community Farmers Market page.
Any interested vendors can contact Smith at 415-999-5635 or firstname.lastname@example.org.