May 3, 2013

Skowhegan Farmers' Market open for season

Morning Sentinel Staff

SKOWHEGAN -- The Skowhegan Farmers' Market opens Saturday for its 16th season, offering fruit, vegetables and naturally raised meats from 15 area vendors.

The downtown market runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the parking lot of the Somerset Grist Mill.

Market manager Sarah Smith of Grasslands Farms said opening day events include a free children's fashion show sponsored by Kid Friendly, a new consignment store in Skowhegan. The show starts at 10 a.m. with live music by D.W. Gill.

There also is an on-site demonstration garden for children and breakfast and brunch at The Pickup Cafe, inside the grist mill.

The market also continues to offer the Double Dollars public assistance program, in which food assistance and Women, Infants and Children Nutrition Program recipients can redeem benefit vouchers for double their value, up to $10, Smith said.

Smith said people who previously could not afford to purchase fresh food now can redeem WIC benefit vouchers for double their value, allowing them to buy more and better food locally.

The farmers' market is one of the markets in Maine that has bought electronic benefit transfer, or EBT, technology for state food assistance programs and to require that all market vendors accept EBT and WIC benefit vouchers.

Market events planned for May include:

May 11: painting clay pots and planting flower seeds for Mother's Day, sponsored by The Highlands, as well as a daffodil give-away sponsored by Koons Creamery, and live music.

May 18: planting a medical garden sponsored by Blessed Maine Herb, with music by Twisted String.

May 25: a petting Zoo sponsored by Tessier Farm with music by Shane McNear.

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