(GREAT BARRINGTON and WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass) – Berkshire Grown will present more than 60 regional farmers and food producers to the Berkshires at the third annual Holiday Farmers’ Markets, scheduled for Great Barrington on Saturday, November 19, 2011, and Williamstown on Sunday, November 20, the Saturday and Sunday before Thanksgiving. A second market in both locations is scheduled for the Saturday before Christmas on December 17.
The Berkshire Grown Holiday Farmers’ Markets connect farmers and food producers directly with members of the community, strengthening the Berkshire Grown farm-to-table network. The Holiday Farmers’ Markets create new opportunities for farmers and food producers to increase sales of locally produced and preserved agricultural products, helping to boost the local economy.
In Great Barrington, Holiday Farmers’ Markets will be held at the Muddy Brook Elementary School Gymnasium on Monument Valley Road. In Williamstown, the markets will take place at the Williams College Towne Field House on Latham Street. All four markets will run from 10 am – 2 pm.
Entertainment includes live music at both venues and lunch items will be available for purchase. The events are free and open to the public.
The Great Barrington November market will present 37 vendors including Allium Restaurant + Bar, Asia Luna, Berkshire Co-op Market, Berkshire Grown, Berkshire Mountain Bakery, Berkshire Wildflower Honey, BlueQ, BOLA Granola, Broody Hill Cookies, Bug Hill Farm, Castle Street Cafe, Cedar Farm, Community Cooperative Farms, Consider Bardwell Farm, Cricket Creek Farm, Farm Country Soup, Farm Girl Farm, Foggy River Farm, Indian Line Farm, Justamere Tree Farm, Klara’s Gourmet Cookies, Kripalu, Leahey Farm, Markristo Farm, Mayflower Farm, Maynard Farms, Moore Fine Food, Mystical Rose Herbals, North Plain Farm, Ooma Tesoro, Project Sprout, Shaker Mountain Canning Co., Sweet Brook Farm, The Meat Market, Tortured Orchard, Your Spice of Life, Zehr & Sons Mushroom Farm.
The Williamstown market will host 30 vendors in November including 3-Corner Field Farm, Babycakes, Berkshire Grown, Berle Farm, Black Queen Angus Farm, BlueQ, Bug Hill Farm, Cedar Farm, Community Cooperative Farms, Cricket Creek Farm, East Mountain Farm, Farm Girl Farm, Farm Country Soup, Gammelgarden Creamery, Holiday Brook Farm, Ioka Valley Farm, Jaeschke’s Orchard, Klara’s Gourmet Cookies, Mezze Catering, Mighty Food Farm, Nichols Poultry Farm, Ooma Tesoro, Peace Valley Farm, Shaker Mountain Canning Company, Sweet Brook Farm, The Berry Patch, Tortured Orchard, West River Creamery, Wild Oats Market and Williams College Sustainable Food & Agriculture Program and The Zilkha Center.
A SUCCESSFUL HISTORY
The Holiday Farmers’ Markets began in 2009 with two market locations the weekend before Thanksgiving, taking place on the same day. Given demand for winter markets, Berkshire Grown hosted a total of four markets in 2010, adding the weekend before Christmas as a second economic opportunity for the food and farming community. This year, the organization will be producing four markets again.
Berkshire Grown has made great strides toward increasing awareness of locally grown food throughout the region. The Holiday Farmers’ Markets have attracted more than 4,400 people in 2010 and vendors generated more than $80,000 in sales for their businesses. There were 64 vendors at the November markets and 72 vendors at the December markets. These markets drew more people than the best-attended Berkshire-based farmers market during the summer. The Holiday Farmers’ Markets welcomed 2,100-plus attendees in 2009 and are showing significant economic impact as the events grow. “Wildly beyond expectations,” was how one of the vendors described their experience in a post-market survey, which is issued after every market.
As part of Williams College’s ongoing commitment to sustainable food and local agriculture, the College is co-sponsoring the markets by donating the Williamstown venue as well as providing funding toward the event. The Williams College Sustainable Food and Agriculture Program and The Zilkha Center for Environmental Initiatives is supporting the markets as a community partnership to further incorporate the principles of sustainability into the fabric of campus life. For more information on Williams’ ongoing commitment to sustainable food, visit http://sustainability.williams.edu.
In addition to generous support from Williams College, the premier sponsors for the markets are The Williamstown Chamber of Commerce and the Green Pastures Fund of the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation. Major sponsors of the event include Berkshire Co-op Market, Berkshire Organics, BlueQ, Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, Mezze Restaurant Group, Sweet Brook Farm and The Red Lion Inn.
Great Barrington – Muddy Brook Elementary School Gymnasium
Saturday, November 19th – 10 am – 2 pm
Saturday, December 17th – 10 am – 2 pm
Williamstown – Williams College Towne Field House
Sunday, November 20th – 10 am – 2 pm
Saturday, December 17th – 10 am – 2 pm