Mark your calendars for our 2nd annual All Things Local Festival: “Downtown to Down Home.” It is Sunday August 5th from 11 to 3. We will be hosting it again at our farm with our sponsor, River Country Tourism. It is a celebration featuring local food, drink, art, music, fitness, door prizes and more where you can learn more about the amazing organizations, businesses, and attractions in our community. Information flyers are available now at our market and you can also find it as an event on our Facebook page. We also have the highlights at the bottom of this update for you.**
We are in full preparation mode for this, so excuse the dust flying and construction sounds as we clean, move, repair and get ready! Here’s some new additions for 2018:
- Ruth will be coming out of retirement and bringing her famous pecan and cashew brittle that so many of you are missing this year. If you would like to order in advance and stock up, please call the market or email us and we’ll give orders to her.
- Gluten Free Sensations will be here with gluten-free samples and information about their bakery
- So Flexi Yoga Studio will be holding yoga demonstrations in our grape vineyard by the parking lot–feel free to join in
- Peaceful River Massage will be giving free chair massages
- Lowry’s Books & More will be selling local authors’ books and owner Tom Lowry will speak about local authors
- Deborah Haak, from the Three Rivers Library, will be speaking about buying local and food preservation
- Nature’s Edibles will be bringing dried fruit and vegetables — many are done from our produce!
- The Maple Row Sugar House will have their food truck with their amazing maple products, including brats!
- Faith in Flora will be bringing flower arrangements and very interesting plants
- St. Joseph County Parks will be presenting information on the numerous area parks
- St. Joseph County Historical Society of Michigan will be talking about the historical sites we have in our area
- Plus, all of the artists, musicians and others that were here last year!
…and if the weather cooperates and our sunflowers bloom in time, we will have a walking and driving tour set up where you can meander along a path cut through 3 acres of sunflowers. There will be photo opportunities, a chance to pick your own sunflowers to take home, educational highlights and more. It’s your chance to be-dazzled by hundreds of happy-faced flowers!
If the sunflowers are not ready the first weekend in August, they will be coming soon thereafter. We originally thought we would have a sunflower festival on an August weekend, but have now decided that when they are in prime bloom time, we will have it open every day so more can enjoy it. They should last several weeks once we open this. More to come–stay tuned.
Hard Ciders, Wine and Brandies:
Preach is back! And because we need to free up some kegs, we’ll have cider sales this weekend! Come to Happy Hour (4-6pm Friday, 3-6pm Saturday) and enjoy 32 oz. growler fills for $5 and 64 oz. growler fills for $10. Bring your own clean growlers from home and we’ll put our sticker over them, or buy one from us! We have Brunch (Maple/Vanilla), Strawberry, Hopped, Afternoon (Strawberry/Chamomile), Prince Tribute, Sour Cherry/Sage, Standard Dry, Standard Sweet, and Standard Semi-Sweet in bottles.
We also have our full line of Hubbard’s Brandy, Double Cherry Wine, and Kaiser Cyser. If you’re looking for our cider outside of our farm, you can visit Rooster’s Wing Shack in Three Rivers, The Riviera Theatre in Three Rivers, Dussel’s in Cassopolis, Craft Beer Cellar in Grand Rapids, and as always, The Local in Centreville, Michigan.
Brandy tasting and tours are this Saturday from 1-3. Hard cider tastings are at the market 4-6 on Fridays and 3-6 on Saturdays. Come sit and enjoy the space at the side of the market with a drink and pleasant conversation, and a view of the lake and our gardens. We look forward to seeing you rain or shine!
- Blueberries–are ready!
- Picked blueberries available now in pints, quarts, 5 lb boxes and 10 lb boxes
- U-Pick Blueberries: We have a relatively small field compared to most major blueberry growers (only three acres), so our u-pick blueberries are for folks who just want to come over to pick a few pounds (limit of 10 pounds per group) for the experience. We are open now for U-Pick. We will be open daily until they are all picked. We have an early and late variety, so expect them to go a few more weeks. Feel free to call ahead to make sure there is picking going on the day you are trying to come. 269-244-5690. If you are looking to pick a lot of blueberries, we recommend you try Brookside Farms, located in Paw Paw. They supply our picked berries and have a delightful farm for you to visit and pick at. 269-657-3500 or check their website: https://brooksidefarmsmi.com
Here’s what else is on the market now:
- Fresh sweet corn, green beans, broccoli, eggplant, brussel sprouts, zucchini, cucumbers, yellow summer squash, fresh dug onions, new potatoes, field peppers
- Greenhouse tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers
- U-pick herbs: Find bags, scissors for cutting around the neck of the bird overlooking the herb garden. If you haven’t tried using freshly picked herbs you will be amazed at how they punctuate your food. So bring your recipes and pick away.
Organics! Lettuce, garlic scapes, basil, lots of cucumbers, kale, cabbage, swiss chard, and some tomatoes including cherry tomatoes from the certified organic plot. We’ve also begun pulling some garlic bulbs for you. These are to use fresh! We will have cured garlic for winter storage later on in the year, and will also give you recipes for pickling (which is Becca’s preferred way to store garlic for use year round). Also, find large and small bags of basil picked on the weekends and a great recipe to make an easy vinaigrette that can be used in many ways. Eggplants and peppers are slowly making their way in as well.
Straw: We have extra bales of straw available for your mulching needs. They are $6/bale or 4 bales for $20.
Bakery: Be sure to come see us in the bakery! If there is a favorite pie or something you want for the holiday, please feel free to call and have us save it back for you! 269-244-5690.
Bakery offerings for the weekend will be:
- Cookies: Cut Out Sugar, M&M “Monster” Cookies, Ginger Molasses, S’mores, Cherry White Chocolate Chip, Coconut Pecan, Zucchini Chocolate Chip, and Lemon
- Pies: Blueberry, Blueberry-rhubarb, Cherry, Peach, Strawberry Rhubarb, and Blueberry Glaze (available Fri, Sat, Sun)
- Breads: Vegetable, Blueberry-zucchini, Whole Wheat, Whole Grain, Cinnamon, Vegetable, LaBrea Breads, Focaccia, Hamburger and Hotdog Buns
- Cinnamon Rolls, Sticky Buns, Yeast Donuts
- Blueberry coffee cake
- Assorted muffins
- Cake Donuts: Buttermilk, Blueberry, and Cherry (made on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday)
- Gluten free sensations items in bakery freezer including pies, cookies, brownies, and cinnamon rolls!!
- Slushies (now in 2 sizes based on customer’s requests for larger size!)
- In the bakery freezer, Plainwell Vanilla Ice Cream, for pie a la mode! Pair with a cherry and blueberry pie and you’ve got your red, white and blue!
Are you looking for larger quantities to can, pickle or freeze? Just call or stop in the market to get on the lists we keep for bushels of pickling cucumbers, green beans, tomatoes, peppers, sweet corn and other produce. We recommend that you wait to get sweet corn for some of our later varieties (August). While we think the corn is good right now, it will only get better with the later-day varieties. Many of our staff members can, freeze and pickle produce, so seek them out with your questions.
Monarch butterfly update: If you have visited the Market lately, you may have noticed we have Monarch caterpillars and chrysalis on display. We wanted you to enjoy watching the cycle as they transform themselves from hungry caterpillars to beautiful butterflies. The caterpillars were found on milkweed from the market area, old schoolhouse, and hoop house, and are feeding on milkweed leaves. The first two are now in the chrysalis stage and we expect them to emerge in 7 to 10 days as butterflies.
Everyone at the farm hopes to see you soon–especially for our festival
- **Celebrate All Things Local hosted by Corey Lake Orchards and sponsored by the River Country Tourism Council. Tickle your taste buds with food and drink to sample and purchase. Enjoy a feast for the eyes as shared by the Three Rivers Artists Guild. Learn about the joys of local life from our speakers and exhibitors. Let the “Pipers 4” serenade you as you sample the offerings from downtown Three Rivers and River Country with its many restaurants, parks, organizations, retailers, historical sites, and spiritual centers.11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Activities Throughout the EventDisplays representing • River Country Tourism Council of Greater St. Joseph County • Three Rivers Downtown Development Authority • Three Rivers Public Library • Three Rivers Artists Guild • St. Joseph County Parks • St. Joseph County Historical Society of Michigan • Local spiritual centers • Lowry’s Books and More (featuring books by local authors) • So Flexy Yoga • Peaceful Rivers (massage) • Faith in FloraFood for purchase and samplings • Corey Lake Orchard products, market, playground, bakery (available 8 am to 6 pm) • Gluten Free Sensations (baked goods) • Hope Foundation Fire Truck (kettle corn) • Maple Row Sugarhouse (food truck— brats and maple products) • Nature’s Edibles from Ginger Hills Farms (dried fruits and vegetables) • Ruth’s Sweet Treats (pecan and cashew brittle)12:00, 1:00, 2:00 PM Highlights on local authors by Tom Lowry, bookstore owner
- 12:00, 1:00, 2:00 PM Demos by So Flexy Yoga
- 12:00 to 3:00 PM Brandy House Tastings by distiller, Bruce Ruesink
- 12:00 to 3:00 PM Hard Cider Tastings by hard cider maker, Becca Sonday
- 12:30 to 1:15 PM Presentation on buying and preserving locally-grown foods by Deborah Haak, Three Rivers Public Library
- 1:30 to 3:00 PM Musical Serenade by local ensemble, the “Pipers 4” 3:00 PM