As I walked by the booths at the Homer Farmers Market last weekend I overheard someone talking to a yoga instructor who excitedly told about how now her classes can be seen online. Online yoga? Yes.
Everything has gone online. So much has changed in such a short time. Just six months ago there were discussions on how to keep the online Alaska Food Hub going strong. Now the sales on the hub have gone through the roof. If you want to see what farmers on the Kenai Peninsula are up to, there is no better place than www.alaskafoodhub.org.
The Homer Farmers Market may not have crafters vending yet, but many have moved online. Scott Miller, the maker of the familiar Wooden Diamonds jewelry, for example, can be seen volunteering at the Market rather than behind a booth. But if you miss his detailed pendants and earrings, you can see him online at www.woodendiamonds.com.
As the summer shifts and changes, the Farmers Market will as well. Now that folks are getting used to the idea of wearing masks to protect their farmers and fellow customers, things are definitely getting easier (and safer) for staff to handle. The number of vendors allowed and other issues will continue to be reevaluated as the summer goes on.
But for now the Market structure looks like it did about 10 years ago. The parking lot isn’t crowded and there aren’t as many thrills and frills. The difference is that now we have farmers who are adept at producing food for our community and you can find booths stocked with veggies until the bell rings at 3 p.m.
Sure, some things may run out, like those tender baby beets or turnips. But the choices are many for this early in the season thanks to our farmers. They are bringing in radishes and chard, green onions and pak choi, arugula and rhubarb, kale and sprouts.
So as everyone goes through all these changes this year, try something new for yourself. Have you ever had pesto made from lemon sorrel? What could you make with other herbs like mint, lovage or chives? The taste of fresh never changes.
The Market is open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. down on Ocean Drive.
Kyra Wagner is the coordinator of Sustainable Homer and the Homer Farmers Market’s biggest fan.