By: Bianca Bidiuc & Molly Costigan, SFC Community Health Organizers (AmeriCorps VISTA)
Sustainable Food Center (SFC) shines in the summertime by offering fun activities and promoting healthy living at all four of our farmers’ markets (Downtown, Sunset Valley, Triangle, East). The farmers’ market is an ideal place to learn about new varieties of fresh fruits and vegetables, watch a cooking demonstration, sample new foods, and participate in children’s activities. We’ve highlighted a few of the top reasons to visit:
1. A trip to the farmers’ market is a great way to spend time outside relaxing and learning. All four SFC markets have green space for playing, sitting, strolling, eating, and more. The Downtown and Sunset Valley markets feature the Imagination Playground, and the East market has become a great destination for educational fieldtrips. The Triangle market is especially popular for pet owners!
2. There is no better way to try fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables than with a visit to the farmers’ market. Been looking for that perfectly ripe melon? Craving peaches, figs, and cherry tomatoes? Find out what’s in season and enjoy a wide variety of produce at its peak. Our farmers pick their produce when it’s ripe, just before market day. Be sure to check out the Taste the Place table and sample produce and products from different vendors. And don’t forget, you can beat the heat during the summer months and start shopping as early as 8:30 at the Sunset Valley and Downtown markets on Saturdays.
3. Bring your kids to the SFC Farmers’ Market Downtown for a variety of free activities designed just for kids! On the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month, they can make a healthy snack in The Little Kitchen from 10 am – 12 noon, and on the 3rd Saturday the Li’l Sprouts program offers fun, educational activities about eating healthy, nutritious, and local food! The market runs every Saturday from 9 am – 1 pm at 4th and Guadalupe.
4. Make your food dollars go further at the SFC Farmers’ Market East every Tuesday from 10 am – 1 pm at the YMCA East Communities Branch (51st St. and Highway 183)! This market features a Double Dollar Incentive Program/Doble Dólares Programa, so if you purchase $10 in fruits and vegetables with your SNAP – Lone Star Card, or your WIC FMNP (Farmers Market Nutrition Program) vouchers, the Market Information booth coordinator will give you $10 DDIP/Doble Dólares money to spend on more fruits and vegetables. We will match your fruit and vegetable purchases every week! Families can also visit with vendors, enjoy the playground, and have lunch in the shaded picnic area.
Con Mi MADRE is very fortunate that Sustainable Food Center is one of our partners. They will be providing a cooking/nutrition class for our Summer Champ Camp. They are a great resource in our community.