The East Isles Farmers Market is returning for its second season along The Mall, giving Uptown a weekly market to buy fresh food from regional farmers and cooks.
Last year, the food-focused market found itself with an abundance of sweets and a shortage of vendors by the early fall, according to director Debbie Dachis Gold. It was the first season, she said, and they mostly just wanted to be up and running.
But for its second year, the market has 18 full-time vendors signed up about two months before its June 13 opening day and are shooting for a total of 20, Dachis Gold said.
“This year we kind of have street cred,” she said.
That street cred has led to vendors approaching the market. In addition to vendors selling a regular supply of fresh fruits, vegetables and meat, East Isles Farmers Market has commitments from a kombucha brewer, an organic hemp farmer who makes “pharmaceutical grade” CBD, a bee farmer, an egg and poultry farmer and two new homemade pie bakers: Heather’s Pies and Fruit & Grain bakery. Other new offerings this year include Midwest Mushroom and a fresh fish vendor, Dachis Gold said.
Each week will have a rotating food truck, she said. And once a month the market will include a goat yoga class.
The market will run from 4 to 8 p.m. each Thursday from June 13 through Sept. 12, with two Wednesday markets planned for July 3 and July 31 to accommodate Fourth of July celebrations and the Uptown Art Fair.
This year the market will be located between Humboldt and Irving avenues on The Mall – the four-block stretch of parkland just south of the Midtown Greenway in Uptown. That’s a block west of last year’s location, which was adjacent to Hennepin Avenue.
“It’s better visibility,” Dachis Gold said.
The market was started by East Isles Residents Association which will vote May 14 on allocating $21,000 to the market, and is the first farmers market to appear on Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board property.