By Tricia Phelps
Cold temperatures are descending on northern Michigan as one season ends and another approaches. But more than ever before, local farmers are extending their growing season with greenhouses, hoophouses and covering late season crops to shield them from frost. With that effort, even throughout the cold winter months, consumers have access to fresh, local produce. Outdoor farmers markets may be closing down, but indoor farmers markets are emerging all throughout the region.
Just as we shield ourselves with coats, hats, and scarves, as winter approaches, local farmers are preparing the land and crops—tilling old beds, pulling out old trellises, and planting cover crops. Preparing the land for winter increases the fertility of the soil come spring. But we can help, too—by visiting local retailers and indoor farmers markets, which help our hardworking farmers through the cold winter. In turn, their fresh produce nurtures and sustains us, keeping us healthy and happy no matter the weather.
Here are a few places to keep in mind this winter.
Indoor Farmers Markets:
Frankfort Farmers Market
9 a.m.- 1 p.m. Saturdays
While in Frankfort why not stop by the Crescent Bakery and Café’? They offer all sorts of locally made and sourced goodies. http://www.crescent-bakery.com
Boyne City Farmers Market
8 a.m.- noon Saturdays
Right down the block in downtown Boyne City, you’ll also find two eateries from our supporters at Magnum Hospitality: Red Mesa Grill and the new Café’ Sante (which features “locally inspired cuisine and cocktails” menu.) http://www.magnumhospitality.com/
Charlevoix Farmers Market
9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Saturdays
As you pass through the narrows lining up for the Bridge, make sure to carve out some time to stroll Charlevoix’s streets and take in some of the wares of our retail partners there. There’s the Cherry Republic Store (www.cherryrepublic.com) , Oleson’s Food Market (http://www.olesonsfoods.com/storeinformation.html) , Roquette Burger Bistro (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Roquette-Burger-Bistro/104414842959577), and Stafford’s Weathervane restaurant http://www.staffords.com. All of them are TLD supporters and make an effort to sell local foods.
The Village at Grand Traverse Commons Farmers Market
10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Saturdays
While you’re enjoying the brink-lined corridors of Building 50, take a stroll down to the local-food star, Trattoria Stella. Their commitment to local foods is amazing. http://stellatc.com
Petoskey Winter Indoor Farmers Market
Fridays 8:30 a.m. – noon at the NCMC Student Services Building
NCMC is located on the north side of town. On your way there and back, make sure to stop by one of downtown Petoskey’s local food heroes, American Spoon. They have great store and kitchen featuring fresh food to delight your senses… and you can buy some of their famous jams and preserves as well.
Tricia Phelps holds the 2013 Taste the Local Difference internship on local food marketing. You can reach her through our email system, email@example.com.