Town Square

Farmers' Market - Family Style

Original post made by Jennifer Fogliani, Whisman Station, on Jun 26, 2011

My husband and I had been talking about going for weeks. But the first Sunday it rained. Then Owen had a runny nose. And last Sunday we forgot.

But as soon as we heard that the Mountain View Farmers' Market was voted one of the best in California, we knew there were no more excuses. The following Sunday, at 10 am on the dot, the four us boarded the Light Rail and minutes later arrived at the farmers' market ready for an agricultural adventure.

There were already a lot of people. Young families enjoying the experience and seasoned shoppers inspecting the produce and buying the best the market had to offer that day.

After discussing our meals for the week, my husband, Norm, and I took turns buying our produce.

"A bag of green beans, please," Norm said and brought it back to show us how tender and green they were.

"A basket of strawberries, please," I said and turned the stroller to give our children, Josie and Owen, a sample.

"Isn't this fantastic?" I asked Josie and Owen as I pushed them to the next stand.

"Isn't this over?" Josie said, unimpressed by the experience so far.

My husband and I were shocked. We couldn't believe that they weren't having fun.

Rows of fresh produce. Free samples. A great community. We were having a blast. But Josie and Owen were looking for a McDonalds.

We decided to walk around one more time. We were half way through our last lap, when Josie and Owen started screaming and scrambling to get out of the stroller.

My husband and I looked around to see what fruit or vegetable had finally peaked their interest.

"I want a pink one," Josie said and ran full speed ahead to the man in a funny hat blowing up balloons.

Owen followed, "I want blue!"

And, suddenly, it all made sense. It wasn't fresh produce they were after. It was balloons animals.

"A blue tiger, please," Owen said.

"A pink butterfly, please," Josie said.

A few minutes later, we left the Mountain View Farmers' Market with bags of fresh produce, two fabulous balloon animals and two, finally, ecstatic children.

We hope one day Josie and Owen enjoy the Mountain View Farmers' Market for the wonderful people and incredible fresh fruits and vegetables. But, for now, they are too busy enjoying their balloon animals.


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Posted by HuffPuff
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jun 27, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Well, I can't blame the kids...this time of year the local balloon animals are at their peak!

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Posted by Joan
a resident of another community
on Jun 27, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Agree - Definetly the best farmer's market I have been to.

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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 28, 2011 at 7:15 am

Much of what is passed off as fresh produce in the market is actually at peak or near spoiling, hence lower prices on only some of the products. The strawberries won't last but a few days, the oranges are the ones that have been lying on the ground and passed over. Only urbanites that never stepped foot on a farm or worked in agriculture would fall for the Euro-romantic, pastoral lure and illusion of a farmer's market in the middle of Mountain View. The market is more about projecting image and psychological comfort for many, as the writer here illustrates.

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Posted by Jennifer Fogliani
a resident of Whisman Station
on Jun 28, 2011 at 7:55 am

@Observer: Thanks for your comments and observations. You are right - I am certainly not very familiar with farming but I do find the vegetables and fruits, in my opinion, taste fresh when we bring them home and eat them (usually right away). And we also love the experience - not just the food.

It's probably all about perspective, and another great thing about Mountain View is all the many different perspectives in the community. Thanks for sharing yours.

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Posted by Catherine
a resident of Willowgate
on Jul 1, 2011 at 1:40 pm

The farmers market is especially good for picking up stuff you can't find in many grocery stores, like Blenheim apricots and dry-farmed tomatoes. And who can resist having vendors like Scream Sorbet and Bread and Bun in one location? Plus, it's a great way to teach kids about seasonal foods.

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Posted by Martha
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jul 2, 2011 at 9:37 am

Observer: such a sunny outlook you have!

I know that when I buy bags of salad greens at the farmer's market, they are still usable a week later. When I buy loose salad greens at a supermarket, they are mushy and gross within a week. And I often get tired of buying rock-hard peaches at the grocery store and waiting for them to get ripe enough to eat, only to have them go from rock-hard to rotten seemingly overnight. I'm OK with buying a few perfectly ripe peaches at the market and eating them up in a couple of days. Totally worth it.

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Posted by Mr. Rogers
a resident of Castro City
on Jul 5, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Is that creepy clown still there? Wouldn't let my gets near that guy. CrreeeeePY!!!!!