Jenni Medley of Blood, Sweat and Food holds up fresh chickens while Jen Becker watches at the opening of the Homer Farmers Market on May 25, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Jenni Medley of Blood, Sweat and Food holds up fresh chickens while Jen Becker watches at the opening of the Homer Farmers Market on May 25, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Homer Farmers Market: Market includes veterans from 20 years ago

I was told that I should use this article as a vehicle to explain to people how good claytonia is. Also known as miner’s lettuce, this thick and tasty herb does great in salads, but is often overlooked at Luba’s Garden booth.

As the market celebrates its 20th season you can see how something would get missed. There are booths full of produce and starts and crafts of all kinds crowded with competing shoppers. But it wasn’t always that way.

Twenty years ago, the first Market had around a half a dozen tables. There are two people at today’s Farmers Market who were also vendors on that first day. Paul and Jen Castellani were there with Jan Lyndes, who started the WIC and kids program, Julia Harrod, and Sharon Roufa from Two Sisters Bakery. Margarida Kondak, who now runs the Information Booth, sold flowers on that first day and Ross Heinselman sold from a truck full of red romaine lettuce, handing it out fist over fist. Paul couldn’t remember if he was at that first day, but Winslow and his home-grown red cedars were a regular booth that first year.

Things change. Ross left town to join the Peace Corps on the Galapagos Islands. Jan moved to New Hampshire and now teaches at a Waldorf school. But those tables have multiplied over the years. Now with a full parking lot and more than 40 vendors, the farmers market is a lot like a snapshot of our community twice a week. Our dedicated and professional vendors showed up at last Saturday’s Market with tomatoes and cucumbers, potatoes and onions, greens and herbs, and starts of all kinds. The food vendors are at the top of their game and the children’s activities were full of games.

To commemorate this 20th year, the Market has put together a cookbook full of local recipes. You can find it at the Information Booth. Don’t miss it. The Market is now also open on Wednesdays from 2 to 5 p.m. too as well as Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. down on Ocean Drive, so don’t miss out (especially on the claytonia).

Kyra Wagner is the coordinator of Sustainable Homer and the Homer Farmers Market’s biggest fan.

Homer Farmers Market Director Robbi Mixon, left, and Margarida Kondak, right, display of copy of the Homer Farmers Market Cookbook at the opening of the market on May 25, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Homer Farmers Market Director Robbi Mixon, left, and Margarida Kondak, right, display of copy of the Homer Farmers Market Cookbook at the opening of the market on May 25, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Dan and Luba Dorvall of Nikolaevsk start another season at the opening of the Homer Farmers Market on Saturday, May 25, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Dan and Luba Dorvall of Nikolaevsk start another season at the opening of the Homer Farmers Market on Saturday, May 25, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

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