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Tag Archive | "farmers market"

Businesses benefit from farmers market and novelty food event

A farmer’s market and novelty food trucks offered great food during the Sand Lake community give back event the weekend of June 5. Courtesy photos.

During the weekend of June 5, the Village of Sand Lake became the intersection between novelty foods, a farmer’s market and community give back. 

Big Red’s BBQ, based out of Howard City, was on hand to dish up great smells and awesome grilled dishes; the farmer’s market vendors offered honey, fresh produce, flowers, and clothing; and Big Mike’s Kettle Corn served amazing kettle corn and fresh squeezed lemonade.  

The Sand Lake Trading Company was one of several businesses benefitting from the community give back. Courtesy photo.

At a time in America when finances are shaky and business owners are suffering, the Village of Sand Lake partnered with Big Red’s BBQ for the community give back event.  Big Red’s BBQ donated 10 percent of its weekend profits to the Village of Sand Lake.  In turn, the Village of Sand Lake gave the entire $600 back to local businesses, who suffered during the COVID19 pandemic.  

“We had seven businesses that were directly impacted, either through mandated closure or through ‘carry out’ only,” said Village President Tracy Quinlan.

The Village of Sand Lake intends to expand on community give back by bringing food trucks to the first annual Food Cruise, July 10–12, 2020, hosted by the Village and the Sand Lake Chamber of Commerce. 

“We are super excited about doing some new things this year!” remarked Quinlan.

“If you have a food truck or know of someone who does, please contact the Village of Sand Lake for an application. You will get some great exposure to your business while serving up delightful cuisine. Please plan on attending the Food Cruise!”

The farmer’s market, open every Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., is looking for vendors.  Currently, the vendor spaces are free. Come enjoy local tastes and support local farmers and artisans. Please send an email to:  bfeenstra@grar.com, if you are interested in providing home-grown flavors.

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Shop the Cedar Springs farmer’s market

The Farmer’s Market has a great selection of veggies

The Farmer’s Market has a great selection of Cheese also.

By Judy Reed

If you haven’t visited the local farmer’s market here in Cedar Springs, you’ve been missing out! The farmer’s market, held on Thursdays from 3-7 p.m. behind the Cedar Springs Library on W. Maple Street, has an assortment of items to please the palate, and samples to try before you buy. At last week’s market there was a wide variety of locally grown vegetables; farm fresh eggs; homemade breads; delicious baked goods; tasty jerky; delectable cheeses; popsicles made from fresh fruits; and more. Most of the vendors take cash, credit, or debit. Do yourself a favor and shop local this week at the Cedar Springs Farmer’s Market, managed by Cedar Springs Brewing Company. You won’t be sorry!

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Summer fun in Cedar Springs


If you are looking for something to do this weekend, check out what’s happening in Cedar Springs and the surrounding area.

Thursday morning, June 8, CS Brewing Farmers Market:  Cedar Springs Brewing Co., at the corner of Main and W. Maple Streets, will be hosting its first CSBrew Farmers Market of the season behind the brewery from 8 a.m. to noon. They have vendors lined up to sell local produce, meats, eggs, honey, syrup, cheese, kettlecorn and more. The farmers market will offer fresh, seasonal produce from local area farmers to everyone in the community every Thursday until October.
Friday, June 9, Movie in the Park: Pack up some snacks, lawn chairs or a blanket, and take the family to Morley Park on Friday evening, June 9, to see the movie “Goonies.” Games and activities start at 6 p.m. and the movie will start as soon as it is dark enough for the movie projector to show up on the wall of the Cedar Springs Historical Museum. The event is put on by the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce.

Saturday, June 10, Sidewalk sales: The Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its Artisan Market & Sidewalk sales event beginning at 10 a.m. in downtown Cedar Springs. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This year’s sidewalk sales are set to include Artisan Market vendors and will be a great time for some downtown shopping.

Saturday, June 10, Velzy Park Picnic fundraiser: Head out to the Solon Township Hall at 15185 Algoma Ave to help raise funds for the new Velzy Park. The event will run from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. with community wide sales, (in the parking lot); a craft show (inside the hall); ribbon cutting ceremony for the new walking trail at 11:00 a.m.; a hot dog picnic (fee) at noon; plus 50/50 raffle, basket raffles, and T-shirt sales.

Saturday, June 10, Rickerstrong Run Razor: Back roads motorcycle ride and poker run to raise funds for Brison and Preston Ricker, two local teens suffering from cancer. There is also breakfast, a car show, dinner, and silent auction. Registration 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. at Tribes Church, 6070 Kuttshill NE, Rockford. The car show and dinner will be at Kent City Lounge, 28 S. Ball Creek Ave, Kent City. Call Ginny Wheater for more info at 616-206-1599.

Check out our Hometown Happenings  for other things going on in the Cedar Springs area.

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Fresh Market—the Cottage Food Law

BLOOM-Fresh-market-Apple_pie-webBy Vicky Babcock


The scent of lavender and sun-kissed strawberries wafts upon the breeze; farm fresh eggs tempt the palate; an array of colors and textures delight the senses. Welcome to your local Farmers Market! Tickle your taste buds with samples of honey, fresh fruit and—wait—is that fresh bread I smell?

If you’ve come to Market lately, you may have noticed a trend—small start-up businesses offering a variety of breads, flavored oils, baked goods, jams and jellies and other delicacies. Prior to 2010, these goods were rarely seen at Markets. Start-up costs were counter-productive. State regulation required licenses, licensed industrial kitchens and inspections, drastically cutting into the bottom line of most hopefuls. A business began in the red—many stayed there until quietly packing up shop and eating the costs—until 2010. That’s when Michigan adopted the Cottage Food Laws. The relaxed regulations make it possible for farmers to expand their line of products and for others to test the waters without getting in over their heads. With a small grocery list of staples, a person can begin operations.

However, rules do apply. Sales must be documented. Individuals cannot earn more than $20,000 a year. This changes on December 31, 2017 to $25,000 per year. You need to maintain sales records and provide them to a Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development (MDARD) food inspector, upon request. MDARD has regulatory responsibility for the Cottage Food Law.

Products must be labeled with your name and physical address as well as an ingredient list with a note of possible allergens and the following statement, “Made in a home kitchen that has not been inspected by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development”—this last in 11 point font or larger (about 1/8” tall). Products must be produced in your own kitchen with no animals or pets in the room. You cannot cook for yourself and for sale product at the same time.  Hand-printed labels are acceptable if they are printed legibly in durable, permanent ink and equal or greater to the 11-point font size.

Foods that are allowed under the Cottage Food Laws include:

• Breads and similar baked goods

• Vinegars and flavored vinegars

• Cakes

• Sweet breads and muffins that contain fruits or vegetables

• Fruit pies (cooked)

• Jams and Jellies that have been processed to be stored at room temperature

• Dried herbs and herb mixes

• Dry baking mixes, dip mixes and soup mixes

• Dehydrated vegetables or fruits

• Popcorn and Cotton Candy

• Nuts (coated or uncoated)

• Dried egg noodles

• Roasted coffee beans or ground roast

• Vanilla extract or baked goods or that contain alcohol (be aware that these products require licensing by the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.)

Foods that are not allowed include:

• Meat and meat products

• Fish and fish products

• Raw seed sprouts

• Canned fruits or vegetables like salsa or canned peaches

• Vegetable or Fruit butters

• Canned pickled products

• Pies or cakes that require refrigeration

• Milk and Dairy products

• Hummus

• Cut tomatoes or chopped/shredded leafy greens

• Foccaccia style breads

• Sauces and condiments, including barbeque sauce, hot sauce, ketchup or mustard

• Salad dressings

• Pet foods or treats

All products must be wrapped or otherwise sealed. For example, you cannot sell slices of pie unless they have been individually wrapped for sale. Cottage Foods must be sold by the person producing it to the person consuming it face to face. You can advertise over the internet but you must do the actual transfer of product in person either at a Farmers Market or something similar or from your home.

For a more complete list of allowed or disallowed products or additional information on the Cottage Food Laws please Google™ Michigan Cottage Food Laws or check out the web page at http://www.michigan.gov/mdard/0,4610,7-125-50772_45851-240577–,00.html

Here is a sample label for home product:  note that sub ingredients are required and any nuts must be identified such as, walnuts, almonds, etc. not simply nuts.

Ready to give it a try?  Try out our recipe below for a starter. See you at Market!



1 cup vegetable oil

3 eggs

2 cups sugar

2 tsps. Vanilla extract

3 cups  grated zucchini

2 1/3 cups all purpose flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa

2 tsps . baking soda

1tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. salt

¼ tsp. baking powder

½ cup chopped nuts

½ cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°.  Combine oil, eggs, sugar, vanilla, and zucchini in a bowl.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder.  Add zucchini mixture to dry ingredients.  Stir in nuts and chocolate chips.  Pour into 2 greased 5 x 9-inch loaf pans.

Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack and remove from pans.

Fresh Market is brought to you by Solon Market located at 15185 Algoma Avenue.  For more information call 616-696-1718.  Like us on facebook for updates.



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Cedar Springs to open Farmers, Crafts and Flea Market

In a spin-off from Solon’s popular market, Cedar Springs Chamber of Commerce is hosting a Farmers Market beginning Monday, June 9 from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. and running every Monday through October. Many of the vendors will be ones you might recognize from the Solon Market, but it is open to everyone on a first come, first setup basis. Although Solon Market’s committee is helping to get this market running, Vicky Babcock, Solon Market Manager, stressed that this is not Solon Market.

“We are doing what we can to get the new market up and running, but we have enough on our plates with one market to manage,” explained Babcock. “Ultimately it will be up to the vendors to see that this market continues.”

The market will set up on Ash Street north of the Cedar Pub. For information, contact Vicky at 696-4227.


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Solon Farmers/Flea market is back

For those of you looking for some good deals, the Solon Farmers, Crafts and Flea Market will run every Saturday beginning May 5 through harvest, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Some tables are available. No charge for vendors with the exception that first time flea market vendors will be charged a refundable $20.00 fee. This fee will be returned following clean-up. Solon Farmers Market is located at 15185 Algoma Ave., Cedar Springs. Call (616) 696-1718 for information.


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Farmer and flea market in Greenville

Would you like to get some great deals and have the profits go for a good cause at the same time? Now you can! The Jesus Non-Denominational Church and community impact center has started a farmer and flea market in the old Meijer store parking lot on 1220 N. Lafayette, Greenville. According to Pastor Tom Turner, the profit goes to feed 3,000 people monthly.

The market is open on Fridays and Saturdays, and shoppers can expect to find everything you would normally find—fresh fruits and vegetables, and everything from antiques to hand-crafted woodwork.  And a big plus for both shoppers and vendors is that it is open all day! “We have 1,000 cars that pass us every hour,” explained Turner, “so vendors stay set up all day. Other farmer and flea markets close at noon because the public leaves. But we have customers all day.”

Turner said they only ask for a $10 donation for three full car spaces from vendors—about a 30X18 space per day. He said that in the future they would like to build their market to around 300 vendors and use the profits to build their community impact center dream.

They are open for vendors starting at 6 a.m. and the public at 7 a.m. Call 616-225-9999 or visit www.jesusndc.com for more info.

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Fresh food and opportunity at your local farmers market

Solon Farm market offers fresh produce, a flea market and craft market each Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

By Elisha Smith, Center for Rural Affairs

August 7th–13th is National Farmers Market Week. Farmers Markets are expanding to communities across the nation at an amazing rate. This year over 1,000 new farmers markets have been created nationally.

According to the USDA’s 2011 National Farmers Market Directory, 7,175 farmers markets operated throughout the United States this year, up from 6,132 last year, as more farmers are marketing their products directly to consumers.

Farmers Markets are good for rural communities. They bring farmers and consumers together to create a stronger local economy, provide consumers with fresh, nutritious, affordable local food, and create opportunities for family farmers and ranchers – especially beginners – to diversify their operations and sell what they produce.

Make sure you visit your local Farmers Market this week and return often. To find a farmers market near you check out the USDA National Farmers Market Directory (http://search.ams.usda.gov/farmersmarkets/)

If you don’t have a Farmers Market nearby, help create one in your community. Get started by giving our Farm Bill Helpline a call at 402.687.2100 (ask for the Farm Bill Helpline) for more information about available assistance, then check out the Farmers Market Promotion Program (http://www.ams.usda.gov/fmpp/).

Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) grants provide an excellent opportunity for market farmers, market gardeners and rural communities to recoup some of the costs of establishing a farmers market, promoting an existing market or other direct-to-consumer food marketing as well as satisfying the need for fresh, nutritious food in places where people hunger for that access the most.

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