Monday, June 09, 2008

Shop Green at Downtown Elgin’s Harvest Market This Thursday

In the City of Elgin, “green” is the new black.

Our city’s vehicle fleet is flanked with hybrid cars. Our streetlamps are running on LED bulbs. The new Sherman Hospital will be heated and cooled by a geothermal lake. Judson University is home to one of the most environmentally-sound academic buildings in North America.

And beginning June 12, you can shop “green” every Thursday at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market.

Shopping at a local farmers market is an easy way to start living a more “green” and sustainable lifestyle. Not only are you supporting local farmers and preserving precious farmland, but most of the produce and other items are grown organically without those nasty pesticides, antibiotics and hormones.

One of the favorite vendors at Downtown Elgin’s Harvest Market is Gloria’s Gourmet Meat & Eggs. Gloria and her husband Don Hoffer have a farm in Compton, IL where they raise antibiotic- and hormone-free cattle, pigs, and chickens, as well as a set of healthy, six-month old twins named Nicholas and Katherine.

It’s a pretty amazing thing these days to buy a pound of meat from the person who actually raised it.

The first farmers market started back in 1934 on a dirt lot in Los Angeles when a handful of farmers came together to sell their homegrown wares out of the backs of their pick-up trucks. Elgin’s market hasn’t strayed much from that tradition – except the dirt lot is an asphalt parking lot and the department of public health is a little more stringent on its policies. Thank goodness.

Downtown Elgin’s Harvest Market has a great variety of locally grown and produced offerings – from fruits and veggies to multigrain breads to pickles, olive oil, cheese, fresh-cut flowers and even organic dog treats. Hey, even dogs need to eat “green” – your lawn will thank you.

Each market day we will also host an educational or entertainment group with activities related to “green” and healthy living. We are also planning chef demonstrations showing meal that can be made with market products. Details about what is happening when will be available soon at DowntownElgin.com.

The Downtown Elgin Harvest Market runs June 12 through September 25 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the Civic Parking Lot near City Hall at Douglas and Highland Avenues. And while you are there, be “green” and take a walk around the Downtown to see how its changing.

2 comments:

Crysta said...

I love farmers markets. I just wish their hours were a bit more hospitable to people who work 9 to 5. Maybe a Saturday morning market, or extend the Thursday one till 7 PM? In summer, there's still plenty of daylight.

Jennifer said...

Crysta,

Glad you like the farmers markets too! To answer the Elgin Harvest Market hour question for you, we actually did extend the HM hours until 7pm last year, so that those that don't get home until 6pm could go shopping. But only a couple people would show, not making it profitable for our farmers or a good use of their time when most are 45 minutes or more from their farms. Maybe in the future we will attempt again if the numbers are there:) Saturday would be nice too, once this market has been established - one market that is close by that does do Saturday's is in Dundee.