The Duke Farmers Market kicks off its 17th season this Friday with live music, food vendors and local farmers.
Held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Friday through the end of September, the market has a new location to enhance visibility: the Duke Medicine Pavilion Greenway, outside of the Trent Semans Center for Health Education.
Twelve farmers and artisans will sell a selection of locally grown produce, as well as pasture-raised meats, eggs, cheeses, breads, herbs, olive oil and handmade body care products. At the start of the season, shoppers can expect strawberries, spinach, peppers, leafy greens, spring onions, broccoli, chard, kale, sweet potatoes, turnips, and beets.
On opening day, poet and musician Alice Osborn will perform acoustic folk music and NOSH (portabella and Angus beef burgers), CORE Catering (Divinity School Café), and Pomegranate Kitchen will offer lunch fare. Throughout the market season, events will center on themes such as Duke Employee Appreciation and Bike Month in May. Duke community members will find resources for sustainability, alternative commuting, and a variety of health, safety, and nutrition and fitness topics.
“The Duke Farmers Market not only encourages people to make more mindful decisions on what they are eating, it encourages more meaningful interactions with those who grow their food,” said Cassandra Callas, health education specialist and market coordinator with LIVE FOR LIFE, Duke’s employee wellness program. “We want people to interact with the community here at Duke, connect with people they may not have otherwise.”
Dr. Margot Wuebbens, administrative coordinator in the Department of Biochemistry in Duke’s School of Medicine, likes to shop for peaches, herbs, tomatoes, green beans, plants, and goat cheese. She takes a flat box with her to the market to carry purchases, which sometimes include a bottle of Karmiri Olive Oil, a local company with a family olive grove in Greece.
Wuebbens often grills the fresh market vegetables with the olive oil and Italian seasoning to bring out the natural sweetness of the produce.
“It’s convenient,” she said. “This is a really great service for Duke employees, and I hope it continues. It fits well with the university's emphasis for healthy living.”
Eross Guadalupe, a research analyst at Duke, focuses on summer’s favorite fruit when he goes to the market.
“I go every week during tomato season,” he said “I grab an iced tea to drink and walk around in search of the best heirlooms, German Johnsons and cherry tomatoes.”
Guadalupe tastes the tomatoes as he shops and chats with colleagues. And on Saturdays, he can sleep in.
“I don’t have to hurry up and get my supplies,” he said, “I can take a break.”
Cash is accepted by all market vendors and most accept debit cards via Square. View a map of new location.