From vendor features & product spotlights,
to other important information,
including reminders of market closings,
upcoming classes, and events!
And the Winner is...
Congratulations to Mark Scott – the latest winner of our Refer-a-Friend Gift Certificate Giveaway!!
How does it work? Tell your friends and family about the Virtual Market – they shop and drop your name as the person who referred them to the Market – you then get entered in our drawing for a $10 Virtual Market gift certificate!
Good for anything on the Market, and no expiration date!
Keep those referrals coming, and thank you for staying Local!
Thanks especially to everyone who made Pickup happen tonight! For all the vendors and customers to safely make it out, and on time, despite the weather, was nothing short of miraculous! You’re a wonderful bunch!
The Buehler’s now have ground beef available again!
What great snowball weather – perfect packing snow! If you haven’t tried it yet, you’re sure missing out. A family snowball fight is some of the most fun we’ve had (And trust me – when an overly playful heifer splashes you and the water instantly freezes on your glasses and blinds you, you’re definitely ready to both throw something and find a bright side to Winter!)
We're Open for Orders!
Soap Sale! Grumpy Goat Experiment has clearances out their last few remaining bars of 2020 goat’s milk soap!
And the Certified Organic chicken from Michael’s Pastured Poultry is also on Sale for one more week only!
Stay warm, stay safe, and stay local!
Winter Warm Ups!!
What could be better than convenient canned meats when you need a filling, warm meal on a cold winter day?! We have beef, pork, or chicken in two sizes!
Tis the season for chicken stock! Make your own with our feet and backs from King’s and Michael’s, or pick up some of King’s delicious Ready to Enjoy broth!
And Grumpy Goat Experiment has more of those hearty black beans to offer – in bulk or 1lb pkgs!
But our family’s favorite thing when it’s cold? Warm pumpkin anything! Soup, custard, bread, muffins – cook down a famous Granny Bensman’s Pie Pumpkin and you’ll see why they’re our favorite ever :-)
Welcome Back, Buehler families!!
Happy February to everyone – hope you are all staying warm!! Brr!!
Michael’s Pastured Poultry has several Sales to offer this week!! Check out his Certified Organic chicken cuts and bulk deals!!
So glad to have the Buehler family back with us – both J & S with their Beef plus Phil and Matt with their Pork!
And Simple Living Farm will soon return – but with the current frigid temps, and cold forecast, they’re playing it conservative and staying off the Market for one more week!
I’m signing off and scooting my chair a bit closer to the woodstove – my favorite Chocolate Mint Tea (thanks, McGuffey!) is calling!
Introducing our first Featured Vendor of 2021...
Hidden Springs Farm!
When I informed our five children, ages 1½ to 9½, our next field trip would be to visit Mark Gibson’s Hidden Springs Farm in Troy, you could have heard the happy explosion a mile away. Mark had recently purchased 8 feeder hogs from us, and the kids couldn’t wait to see Link, Biscuit, Gravy, Ham, Porkchop, Patty, Tub ‘o Lard, and Bacon’s new home.
Yet the oldest two kids were also a bit hesitant – have you ever sold an animal to a seemingly good home, only to be disappointed? We’re raising an opinionated bunch when it comes to factory farms and feedlots, so at almost 8 and 9½, they hoped they’d be content with what we found – boy, were they reassured tenfold.
Our trip had a dual purpose – First, I visit the operation of each vendor on the Market. The better I understand their operations, the better equipped am I to answer questions and promote their businesses and products. Plus it helps assure the Health Department that I am able to vouch for each vendor, and verify the source of each product on the Market!
Second, Mark needed a fellow farmer or farmer’s market advocate to complete an inspection for him to join the Certified Naturally Grown program – the incredible grassroots equivalent to being Certified Organic! My husband and I first personally got involved with the CNG program years ago, and are always thrilled watching and helping it expand. So yay! A lengthy, dual purpose inspection it is!
Knowing firsthand raising livestock organically is both rewarding and difficult, I could intimately appreciate seeing the set up Mark has built, with the help of his hard-working sister, for his cattle, hogs, and chickens. What could be better than seeing the animals thriving under his attention and care, with ample space to run and graze as he regularly rotates them to even greener pastures?
Mark is dedicated to being a good steward of the land, improving the quality of his pastures as well as protecting and utilizing the woods and springs on his beautiful 37 acres, with the help of the National Resource Conservation Service. It was an important change to organic agriculture when he learned of the health benefits, for both his family and his livestock. Despite the extra time and costs involved, he has witnessed and loved all the benefits in terms of taste and health.
This past season, everyone saw so much craziness, it’s overwhelming to consider. And in a year where there were deals galore on feedlot animals, Mark was stubbornly, admiringly committed to both staying intimately local when looking for livestock, and purchasing organic, pastured genetics where possible – feeder calves from Bair Trax Dairy, feeder hogs from us at End of the Road Farm, and even ordering his chicks from the King family of King’s Poultry Farm.
March 2021 marks my 5th anniversary as manager of Miami County Locally Grown, and Mark is a perfect vendor. I am thankful he’s always accommodating, thorough, and just so pleasant to work with – particularly when it took SO long for him to be able to join the Market, waiting for the inspection and paperwork for his Small Egg Producers License. Mark’s generous nature amazes me, and I so appreciate the sincerity with which he wants both the Market and his fellow vendors to succeed.
It is always such fun to visit a new farm with our children. They’ve seen A LOT of farm life, just by growing up and helping out on our own diverse homestead, but especially with all the traveling and visiting we’ve done to other operations. They are as opinionated and stubborn as their ornery parents when it comes to animal welfare and happiness, with our 4 year old recognizing how happy animals are with plenty of sunshine, fresh air, space, and friendliness – or how sad they are without those basics.
So there’s no higher recommendation I could give than my almost 8 year old son commenting the second we’d piled back in the van to head home, “Mom? This is a happy place. If we had to sell the piglets, I’m sure glad it was to Mr. Gibson.” As am I, Buddy, as am I.
Bulk Special on Dried Beans - $1/lb!!
Check out the Bulk Bargains category this week -
Grumpy Goat Experiment is offering their organically raised Zorro black dried beans only $10 for 10lbs!! Wow!!
This special won’t last long at that price! Time to stock up for hearty winter warm-up meals!
The Buehler's meats and eggs will be back!
The Buehler families, with their beef, pork, and eggs, are only on break from the Market temporarily, and will be back with us the first week of February!
It’s thrilling to have fresh local produce in January – there’s nothing better than seeing a room full of vibrant greens to brighten my Tuesday!
The use of the word Local intrigues me – the federal government and groceries stores still define Local goods as those produced within 500 miles of your location, the distance they figure a semi can drive in one day – yesterday the kids were looking at pictures of places my husband and I have visited or lived, so we looked up a few, only to find Davenport IA, Traverse City MI, and St. Louis MO are all within 500 highway miles of us. Amazing. Glad we define Local as within 30 miles of First Place :-)
We’re also so fortunate to still have eggs on the Market, during the worse time of year for laying – between the cold, the short day length and resulting lack of sunshine, the hens proclivity for molting (when they grow new feathers each year they stop laying!! Ugh!!), the up and down weather, and the unbelieveable variety of wily poultry predators day and night, I’m ecstatic we ever consistently have any eggs to sell at all!
Thanks for shopping with us, supporting our family businesses and farms, and keeping your dollars in our community. Enjoy the glorious sunshine today!!
Hello to another Market week!
Just a reminder we’ll be Closed on the first Tuesday of the month this year – so we’re open for orders this week as normal, then will not reopen next Tuesday! No pickup on Tuesday Feb 2nd!
New on the Market this week – adorable Valentine’s Day dryer balls from Rosy Toes Designs!
And gorgeous naturally dyed yarns from the Grumpy Goat Experiment!
Plus the Grumpy Goats are now offering Popcorn on the cob!! Yum!!
Can you believe that’s just one example of our quirky Ohio regulations – we can sell Popcorn on the cob legally, or loose kernels IF it was harvested with a combine. Any of us small time producers harvesting by hand have to have a special commercial license to shell the Popcorn to be sold! So on the cob it is! :-) And shelling by hand is so fun – give it a try this week! There’s no better treat than homemade Popcorn ;-)
We're Open for Orders!
Short and sweet – happy shopping, and thanks for such a strong start to our New Year! We appreciate your support, your kindness, and your commitment to shopping Local! Thank you for helping us continue doing what we love!