Home » Travel » Destinations

Portland Farmers Market - as American as Fresh Apples

May 7, 2008
Who doesn't love a farmers market? In fact, not to savor the moments spent in one seems downright, well --unnatural. Yet, how many cities can you name where the farmers market is amongst the things to do, and not because there is a shortage of event options, but because the farmers market is an actual event. Sure, other cities might go to the trouble to set aside some prime parking lot real estate and throw together a produce market cum swap meet featuring more five-dollar sunglasses, velvet dolphin art, and lead paint-laden toys from Taiwan than anything edible--except perhaps that Indian fry bread which might have been more souvenir than snack since it won't let you forget you ate it.

But since 1992, Portland's been doing things just a tad differently. Here are the stats. You be the judge. The Portland Farmers Market features over a hundred different vendors selling all manner of in-season, fresh produce as well as fresh meat, cut flowers, honey, nuts, eggs, cheese, bread, and much more to over 14,000 people on any given Saturday. You could say this event is on drugs--but then it couldn't be certified organic. This reverie of all things natural takes place between 8:30 and 2:00 every Saturday, April through December, on the portion of the Portland's South Park Blocks that comprise the campus of Portland State University.

To paint the picture even more vividly, let's just say that, in this context, the word, "market" in the title of the event is crass and not applicable. The Portland Farmers Market is so much more than a formal commercial interaction. Granted, combined with two smaller markets held in downtown, the Portland Farmers Market vendors pull down 5 million in weekly sales. Demand is so high, in fact, that they had to add a fourth market held on the eastside of the city. Yet, to be sure, the reaping of this immense financial bounty is in large part due to the fact that this market is nothing less than a citywide celebration, with the dance held dramatically under stately poplar and elm trees born in 1877.

Of course, the Portland Farmers Market would be nothing without the unique tone and talents of the vendors themselves. These men and women are not the nameless, faceless hands of mere exchange. Each one is passion expressed. And each one is a story.

There is the man who, after a youth spent hard living and doing hard time, found salvation in the beloved bread of his childhood. Inciting the Portland population to "just say no" to bread on drugs, Dave's Killer Bread is all organic, using whole wheat and whole grains that actually live up to the bread's killer name.

There is the woman whose parents named her after the first grape varietal they planted the year she was born, who returned to the beloved wine making of her childhood and is now providing Portland with "wine for the crazy in all of us." Basket Case Wines are the Cabernet and Syrah end of the spectrum, and the companion label that she and her husband also own, Shy Chenin, covers Chenin Blanc and Pinot Noir Rose'.

The tales, of course, run much further, but the Hotel California nature of the narratives remains the same. You can take the boy out of the bakery. You can take the girl out of the wine country. And you yourself can visit the Portland Farmers Market and walk away when you're done. But it will stay with you.
About the Author
Come learn more about the great city of Portland, Oregon and all its communities. Lorri Ely is Co-Owner of
http://www.PortlandNeighborhood.com, a website featuring all the great neighborhoods of Portland Oregon.
Rating:
Please Rate:
(Average: Not rated)
Views: 327
Print Email Report Share
Article Categories
    • Artists
    • Gambling
    • Humanities
    • Humor
    • Movies
    • Music
    • Photography
    • Tattoos
    • Television
    • Classic Cars
    • Motorcycles
    • Recreational Vehicles
    • SUVs
    • Trucks
    • Vans
    • Branding
    • Business Opportunities
    • Careers and Jobs
    • Corporate
    • Customer Service
    • Direct Mail
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Ethics
    • Financing
    • Franchising
    • Home-Based Business
    • Human Resources
    • Import and Export
    • Leadership
    • Management
    • Market Research
    • Marketing and Advertising
    • Negotiation
    • Network Marketing
    • Networking
    • Organizational
    • Presentation
    • Project Management
    • Public Relations
    • Small Business
    • Strategic Planning
    • Team Building
    • Telemarketing
    • Training
    • Data Recovery
    • Databases
    • Games
    • Hardware
    • Networks
    • Operating Systems
    • Programming
    • Security
    • Software
    • Spyware and Viruses
    • Ask an Expert
    • College and University
    • Home Schooling
    • K-12
    • Languages
    • Online Education
    • Psychology
    • Accounting
    • Credit
    • Currency Trading
    • Debt Consolidation
    • Insurance
    • Investing
    • Leasing
    • Loans
    • Mortgage
    • Mutual Funds
    • Personal Finance
    • Stock Market
    • Structured Settlements
    • Taxes
    • Wealth Building
    • Coffee
    • Cooking
    • Gourmet
    • Recipes
    • Wine and Spirits
    • Acne
    • Aerobics
    • Alternative Medicine
    • Beauty
    • Cancer
    • Cosmetics
    • Depression
    • Diabetes
    • Diseases and Conditions
    • Fitness Equipment
    • Fitness
    • Hair Loss
    • Heart Disease
    • Medicine
    • Men's Health
    • Muscle Building
    • Nutrition
    • Skin Care
    • Supplements and Vitamins
    • Weight Loss
    • Women's Health
    • Yoga
    • Arts and Crafts
    • Babies
    • Collecting
    • Elderly Care
    • Genealogy
    • Hobbies
    • Parenting
    • Pets
    • Pregnancy
    • Woodworking
    • Feng Shui
    • Gardening
    • Home Appliances
    • Home Security
    • Interior Design
    • Landscaping
    • Affiliate Programs
    • Article Marketing
    • Auctions
    • Audio
    • Banner Advertising
    • Blogging
    • Broadband
    • Domain Names
    • E-Books
    • E-Commerce
    • Email Marketing
    • Ezines and Newsletters
    • Forums
    • Internet Marketing
    • Link Popularity
    • Pay-Per-Click
    • Podcasting
    • RSS
    • Search Engine Marketing
    • Search Engine Optimization
    • Security
    • Social Media
    • Spam
    • Video
    • Viral Marketing
    • Web Design
    • Web Development
    • Web Hosting
    • Copyright
    • Cyber Law
    • Intellectual Property
    • National, State, Local
    • Patents
    • Regulatory Compliance
    • Trademarks
    • Buying
    • Selling
    • Baseball
    • Basketball
    • Boating
    • Cycling
    • Extreme Sports
    • Fishing
    • Football
    • Golf
    • Hockey
    • Hunting
    • Martial Arts
    • Running
    • Scuba Diving
    • Soccer
    • Swimming
    • Tennis
    • Dating
    • Divorce
    • Marriage
    • Weddings
    • Astrology
    • Buddhism
    • Christianity
    • Faith
    • Hinduism
    • Islam
    • Judaism
    • Meditation
    • Metaphysical
    • New Age
    • Cable and Satellite TV
    • Cell Phones
    • Communication
    • Gadgets and Gizmos
    • GPS
    • Satellite Radio
    • Video Conferencing
    • VoIP
    • Addictions
    • Coaching
    • Goal Setting
    • Motivational
    • Stress Management
    • Time Management
    • Clothing
    • Electronics
    • Fashion
    • Gifts
    • Jewelry
    • Causes and Organizations
    • Environment
    • History
    • Holidays
    • Men's Issues
    • Nature
    • Philosophy
    • Politics
    • Women's Issues
    • World Affairs
    • Article Writing
    • Book Reviews
    • Copywriting
    • Fiction
    • Non-Fiction
    • Poetry
    • Quotes
    • Screenplay
    • Tools and Resources