Williamsburg, Yorktown markets focus on fresh, local foods

It’s that time of year. Time to get outdoors and enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables — and other goodies — from your local farmers market.

This year, the Williamsburg Farmers Market is offering a few new items including a local baker selling cruffins – a combination of a croissant and muffin.

Tracy Herner, market manager, said the farmers market, which opened March 3, is expanding its line of gut-healthy foods, such as fermented vegetables.

“We are pushing things that can promote health this year,” she said.

That includes 84 different varieties of vegetables throughout the season. And the average distance produce travels to make it to the market is 38 miles, so it is all local.

The market also holds a children’s program during the summer for kids between ages of 5 and 10 called the Power of Produce. It is an effort to get children to try more vegetables and learn about growing them. Children’s Day is April 21 with lots of activities planned for the young ones.

The market also has a chef’s tent from May to October with local chefs holding cooking demonstrations.

One thing you won’t see at the Williamsburg Farmers Market is arts and crafts, or food trucks.

“Our focus is to bring local farmers into town,” Herner said.

The Williamsburg Farmers Market is open every Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon in Merchants Square, 402 W. Duke of Gloucester St.

Yorktown Market Days also have some fun things planned for this year, including opening the market on April 14 in conjunction with Kite Day, which sponsored by Jill Pryor, co-owner of Patriot Tours and Provisions in Yorktown.

“Kite Day is a way to get people into kite flying,” Pryor said. “People have them in their garages but they don’t fly them. Dust them off and bring them down.”

And if you don’t have a kite, Pryor will gladly loan you one from her store. Kite Day is from 1-5 p.m. following the market.

As for Market Days itself, Mark Medford, the market manager said customers will see “vendors they’ve grown to love and some new ones, as well as miss some who have gotten out of the business.”

On April 21, a special fundraising event, the French Market, aims to bring awareness to the Sister Cities Yorktown organization and build a connection with Yorktown’s sister city, Port-Vendres, France. The French Market will include French products such as fresh-baked bread, pastries, chocolates, soaps and wine.

Yorktown Market Days are open every Saturday beginning April 14 from 8 a.m. to noon at 331 Water St.

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