July 31, 2019
Yorktown Market Days joins 274 other markets across Virginia in celebrating National Farmers Market Week on Saturday, August 10, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. In a campaign to promote sustainability and fresh eating, the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) and the Virginia Farmers Market Association have teamed up to transform the iconic motto Virginia is for Lovers into Virginia is for Farmers Market Lovers as part of their LOVE line to show appreciation to farmers all across the Commonwealth - including here in Hampton Roads.
With three active farms set up at the Yorktown Waterfront each week - shoppers are bound to find their go-to favorites, but also get the opportunity to try new varieties of fruits and vegetables like purple cauliflower from Allen's Farm, Candy Cane Beets from Penn Farm, or Sugar Baby Watermelons from Wilson's Farm. All three farms are family-owned and operated, and customers will feel like family when they come back week after week.
Governor Northam has also pledged his support by declaring the same week as Virginia Farmers Market Week. His recent proclamation recognizes that farmers markets are vital avenues for farmers like Clint Allen, Polo Sr., and TJ Wilson to sell directly to the public and provide locally grown produce that encourages healthy eating habits. He also references markets' participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which Yorktown began last year and expanded this year to include the Fresh Match Program which gives a dollar-to-dollar match for any EBT card funds spent at Yorktown Market Days on fresh fruits and vegetables.
The governor also highlighted the economic impact farmers markets have on the overall communities in which they reside - by preserving farmland through economic viability, but also by encouraging engagement between neighbors.
Dianne Stringer with Bunches of Blooms wholeheartedly agrees with the governor's sentiment. "Shopping and supporting local businesses enriches the local community, not only financially but also strengthens the community ties and encourages entrepreneurship." Dianne was an Early Childhood Educator for 32 years and has lived in Gloucester for that long. She has always loved nature and gardening and when she retired, they stopped their "cut-your-own" Christmas Tree Farm, but she wanted a way to stay connected to her passion and ties to the Earth. "It's exciting to once again use land for a new venture that provides so much pleasure for us and I hope to our wonderful customers at the market," she says.
Yorktown Market Days has been serving the Peninsula for 13 years and has grown to include 30 Saturday markets in 2019, including several longer themed markets centered around family fun like the Pirate Invasion Market, Fall Festival, Harvest Festival, and Paws at the River Pet Day. Winner of GOLD Best Farmers Market in Hampton Roads, it is the area's one-stop shop for seasonal produce; fresh poultry and eggs; artisan breads and scratch-made desserts; honey, jams, and sauces; flowers, plants, and herbs; coffee, tea, fresh-pressed juices, and wine; high-quality art; and even gourmet dog treats!
Saturday, August 10 is the perfect opportunity for loyal customers and new shoppers alike to come support the almost 40 local vendors, food trucks, artists, and other local businesses who make up Yorktown Market Days. There will be a chef cooking demonstration at 10:30 a.m. with Chef Tina and Coastal Thirst and live acoustical harmony provided by Audio Portrait.
This year, there will also be several free children's activities sponsored by Parks Orthodontics, including farm-themed face painting designs for the kids with Mandy's Fancy Custom Artwork, free "I Love Farmers Markets" stickers and temporary tattoos, painted rocks hidden around the market for younger visitors to discover, and a fun coloring activity.
Dr. Meredith Parks said, "Choosing healthy, nutritious food is a huge part of good dental health. Parks Orthodontics supports our local farmers market and community by teaching our patients to choose foods that are good for their teeth and gums, and their overall health. We believe that getting kids excited about the food they eat will get them excited about making healthy choices for their entire lives."
There is no charge for the market and it is held rain or shine. Free parking is available in several designated areas throughout Historic Yorktown. The Trolley, also complimentary for guests, runs daily in the summer from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. While most vendors accept credit cards, some only take cash. ATMs are conveniently located at Ben & Jerry's and Yorktown Pub.
Additional Event Info:
Additional photos are available at https://bit.ly/2YnkKUo.
Yorktown Market Days is held every Saturday through the end of October (excluding October 5), and is presented by York County and the Riverwalk Landing Business Association.
Special thanks to the 2019 Revolutionary Sponsors Farm Bureau Insurance and Langley Federal Credit Union. Additional recognition goes to State Farm Agent Mark Irwin for sponsoring the Market's Chef Demos, Amory Funeral Home for sponsoring the market's live entertainment each week, and Parks Orthodontics for all the kid-friendly activities.