Every Saturday morning from June through October, the streets of Old North St. Louis come alive with shoppers, live bands playing toe-tapping tunes and vibrant vendor stands selling foodstuffs, crafts, imported fair-trade goods and more at the North City Farmers’ Market.
Regulars and newcomers alike stroll the two-block market, connecting with friends, discovering neighborhood treasures and relishing in the revitalization of the surrounding area. “There is a lot of life in this community, and the market is central to bringing the businesses and residents together,” says Sean Thomas, executive director of Old North St. Louis Restoration Group. Nearby businesses, such as Crown Candy Kitchen and La Mancha Coffeehouse, promote the market all week long, and come Saturday, vendors send marketgoers to these establishments for a midmorning snack or memorable lunch.
According to Thomas, a number of the market stands are run by community residents selling their own goods or products from local farmers. “There are a lot of farmers’ markets in St. Louis, and the farmers can’t be at all of them at the same time,” he says. “We want to help bring their products to Old North St. Louis, so our residents work the stands to sell their goods.”
With two months left in market season and late-summer produce at its peak, it’s the perfect time to stop in and see what’s growing in Old North St. Louis.
North City Farmers’ Market, St. Louis Avenue & North 14th Street, Old North St. Louis, northcityfarmersmarket.blogspot.com
THREE MUST-STOP STANDS
| 1 | The Old North Grocery Co-op, located just one block from the market, sets up a stand showcasing the local products sold in its store. Choose from meat, produce, jarred products and more, all sourced within a 150-mile radius of St. Louis.
| 2 | Freddie Lee’s Ghetto Sauce may have started as a barbecue sauce, but this tangy condiment is recommended by owner and creator Freddie Lee James as a unique flavoring in chili and tacos, on pizza, or as a substitute for spaghetti sauce. One free sample of this delicious sauce, and you’ll be hooked.
| 3 | Check out what’s in season at the 13th Street Community Garden stand. According to garden coordinator Beth Hedrick Moser, members of the volunteer-run garden harvest what’s ripe for the picking every Saturday morning to sell some of the freshest produce available around town.