Issaquah Farmers Market returns for 22nd season April 21

April 17, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

The Issaquah Farmers Market at Pickering Farm attracts large crowds of visitors and patrons on a warm August Saturday in 2011. By Greg Farrar

The historic Pickering Farm emerges from a seasonal slumber soon as the popular Issaquah Farmers Market returns.

The market debuts for the season April 21. The return is a sign springtime is inching closer to summertime.

The farmers market runs every Saturday, rain or shine, from April to October. The market features seasonal produce, crafts, food vendors, and demonstrations or entertainment each week.

The opening celebration nods to Earth Day, April 22. Marketgoers can peruse Earth Day exhibits inside the historic Pickering Barn from “green” organizations, including Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, Getting Around Issaquah Together, Cascade Bicycle Club, Cedar Grove Composing, Puget Sound Energy and the Issaquah Environmental Council.

The festivities also include a community tree planting event to mark Arbor Day.

Farmers from throughout the Evergreen State gather at Pickering Barn every summer Saturday to cajole customers to sample something unfamiliar — green garlic, perhaps, or Japanese eggplant, or maybe grass-fed beef.

Longtime sellers include beekeepers, carpenters, farmers and jewelers, though the market changes from season to season. The eclectic lineup includes fresh offerings as the bazaar returns for a 22nd season.

Sellers and patrons descend on the former farmstead from all directions. The bustling Costco across the street also attracts customers to the market.

If you go

Issaquah Farmers Market

  • 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Saturdays from April 21 to Oct. 13
  • Pickering Barn
  • 1730 10th Ave. N.W.

The market is a boon. The historic barn can attract up to 4,500 people on a busy Saturday. Crowds build throughout the season as rain turns to sunshine, temperatures inch upward and sellers proliferate.

The historic Pickering Barn site nods to Issaquah’s agricultural roots.

The local market predates other Eastside farmers markets by several years. The market opened in downtown Issaquah early on, and then settled at the barn more than a dozen years ago.

Dorothy Knitter and John Whitaker opened the market at Gibson Hall, and the initial vendors sold goods from car trunks and truck beds.

Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or wkagarise@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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