The Franklin Farmer’s Market was up and running on Saturday morning. Held downtown on Palmer Street, the tailgate market is open on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon throughout the growing season.
John Boertjens, one of the market’s founders, usually has all sorts of greens and vegetables to sell, but only had radishes this weekend. He said the weather is to blame.
“We’re about two weeks late from where we normally are because of the cool weather,” said Boertjens. “But it’s all coming. The weather will start changing and everything will be just fine.”
Jerry Hunnicutt, a retired chef who’s been selling at the market for the past six years, agreed with Boertjens.
“Produce just isn’t ready yet. We had such a cold spring that nothing’s growing, but it’s beginning to start off good now that it’s getting warmer,” said Hunnicutt.
Despite the delay in the growing season, there was no shortage of products to buy at the market. Carman Taylor, a proud Franklin native, had a variety of goodies to choose from.
“I have cracked wheat bread, fresh organic eggs, gluten free pastries, organic produce, and I specialize in pound cake,” Taylor said.
But according to Taylor, there’s one item in particular that is a hot commodity.
“Everybody comes for the sticky buns,” Taylor explained as she gave out free samples.
Cathy Speed, of Beulah Land Farm, said it was her fourth year selling at the market.
“The people are really nice, I love it,” Speed said. “I have perennials, herbs, celery... later on I’ll have tomatoes and peppers.”
A somewhat newcomer to the market, Jane Elliott, of Garnet Creek Road, said she also loves it.
“I just started last summer and I have some regular customers now that I look forward to seeing. I plan to be here this whole season,” said Elliott. “I do extra produce from my garden, some baking, jams and jellies, and I do a custom gift basket service.”
Among the produce, plants and baked goods found at the market, Paul Chew is known for selling his hand carved wooden spoons, but this year his booth is growing.
“My spoons have been my main thing, but now I’m growing more stuff. It’s more of a hobby, but part of it is just sharing good food,” said Chew, who had a variety of greens, onions, garlic, fresh caught trout from his pond, and free range eggs at his booth; all of which were organic. “You don’t need chemicals. The less you can do, the better.”
The farmer’s market usually runs during the summer through October or November, depending on the weather. Some vendors began the market in April this year, but the official grand opening for the season will be on June 5.