PORT TOWNSEND — About 70 vendors will offer a variety of products after the ribbon is cut and the goat parade roams though the streets to open the Port Townsend Farmers Market’s season.
The uptown market at Tyler and Lawrence streets will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday and include several new vendors, said Amanda Milholland, Jefferson County Farmers Markets manager.
One is Three Peas Farm, which was established in 2017 on 5 acres on Black Bear Road south of Port Townsend. The farm produces eggs and cheese as well as Salish Sea nettle tea, along with culinary and medicinal herbs.
Another is Port Ludlow’s Honeyhoney Soap, which will have spring colors available with clays and botanicals and scented with essential oils.
“I love seeing vendors that are doing that work of not just bringing local products, but how they can make connections with other farmers to bring something to the market that’s very specific to our local community,” Milholland said.
A special tribute is planned for John Estes, a retired accountant who died last month following at least 15 years of volunteer service as the board treasurer for the Jefferson County Farmers Markets, Milholland said.
The traditional goat parade will follow at 9:15 a.m. Goats will trot through the area along with fiddle music by Kristin and Otto Smith.
Live music will be provided by the Tremont Revelers in addition to Lowest Pair, a special guest band from Olympia at the market, which will close at 2 p.m.
Storytime and children’s craft activities with Jeanne Simmons of the Port Townsend Public Library are planned from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on the grass at the Jefferson County Recreation Center, 620 Tyler St.
Mixed vegetables, meats, eggs and cheese will be available as well as handmade crafts and cider and wine made from locally grown grapes or apples, Milholland said.
The season will extend through the third Saturday in December. The 2018 market made a 5 percent gain over 2017, Milholland said, bringing in for vendors $1.2 million.
On Thursday morning, workers at Red Dog Farm in Chimacum were getting plant starts ready to bring to the market. Naomi Neal and Lizz Muller used pencils to dig into the dirt before they planted parsley starts.
This season will be the 15th for Karyn Williams, who has operated the 23-acre farm since 2008.
“The Saturday market is an amazing community event,” Williams said. “We love to go and sell our produce.
“It’s an important economic event for us because everyone comes out of the woodwork after a cold winter.”
Last week, Roxanne Hudson at SpringRain Farm & Orchard in Chimacum was directing workers on crop rotation.
Hudson has 26 acres, 21 of which are under easement with the Jefferson Land Trust. About 1,200 feet of Chimacum Creek runs right through the farm, Hudson said.
For the market on Saturday, SpringRain Farm & Orchard will feature arugula, mixed salad greens, mixed microgreens and spinach as well as chicken and duck eggs.
Milholland said Saturday is the largest of the markets. The Sunday market at the Chimacum Farm Stand on the corner of Center Road and Rhody Drive will open June 2, and the Wednesday market at the Haines Place Park & Ride will open June 5.
Jefferson County Managing Editor Brian McLean can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56052, or at [email protected].