Just as the sun broke the horizon I arrived to Buchan’s Blueberry Hill–the morning dew still fresh on the acres of blueberry bushes. Ben Buchan rode up on his ATV and Lori Buchan stepped out of the industrial kitchen with a welcoming smile. The pair wasted no time in greeting us and offering a tour of their land.
The National Cherry Festival has been a catalyst of activity for Northern Michigan summers for 89 years. Visitors and locals alike are able to enjoy parades, rides, and countless events within the festival that hype up the vibrancy of our already bustling bayside city. This year, keeping in the theme of “Preserving the Tradition”, the National Cherry Festival wanted to amp up their involvement with what this festival is all about – local agriculture.
Traverse City is known as the Cherry Capital of the World. And even before the National Cherry Festival became an official national celebration in 1931, we’ve been celebrating this history. As a part of the new “Farm to Festival” initiative, Taste the Local Difference has been working in coordination with the National Cherry Festival to bring focus back to our area’s local agriculture.
Harry Norconk is weighing asparagus when I arrive at Norconk Farms. Asparagus season is in full swing and he doesn’t have time to sit and chat, so instead we hop onto an RTV and drive out to the fields to pick up crates of freshly harvested asparagus. Driving around the farm we pass acres of asparagus stalks popping up out of the ground waiting to be harvested. Out in the field workers ride along the rows snapping spear after spear out of the ground and sorting into crates to be washed, weighed and packed.
Keep an eye out for monthly blog posts featuring vendors from the Sara Hardy Downtown Farmer’s Market, written by Market Manager Julianna Lisuk.
Farmer’s Market season has arrived in Northern Michigan! The Sara Hardy Downtown Farmer’s Market began on May 2 with an idyllic Saturday of fresh food and flowers. Customers showed up with their baskets and bags eager to get their hands on the first local produce of the season. Alongside the meat, cheese, bread, and produce vendors were locally grown flower stands overflowing with stunning arrangements, bringing much needed color and life after a cold winter. We recently visited one of our vendors, Petal Pushers, to get a look at where all their beautiful hanging baskets and vegetable plants are grown.