Reunite with us in November as our three farmers markets join forces

Reunions, however brief, give us an oasis from the pace of life these days. While Facebook posts, Instagram photos and Tweets allow us to keep tabs what’s going on with friends and family, they can’t replace seeing people face to face.

Summer is extra challenging for this. The fact the Minnesota State Fair is known as “The Great Minnesota Get Together,” stands out because summers here don’t always lend themselves to getting together. The instinctual spanning out to maximize enjoyment of warm months scatters us in many different directions in various pairs and groups.

For us, each weekly farmers market we hold from mid-May to October is a mini reunion — a chance for neighbors to catch up and share a moment amid frenzied plans. Those outdoor markets have come to an end for the year, but this fall our indoor Holiday Market in November brings us together once again — under one roof where customers and vendors from all three of our markets can congregate.

This year it’ll take place at Bachman’s on Lyndale Sunday, Nov. 15, 9 a.m.–1:30 p.m. in their nice warm greenhouse.

Think of it as part of the Minnesota fall tradition of “The great settling back down” — returning to people and pastimes that were perhaps put on the back burner while we were all out soaking in the sun.

It’s extra symbolic this year that the Holiday Market unites vendors from all three markets. This year marked a turning point for us as an organization: it’s the first year we’ve operated as Neighborhood Roots Farmers Markets.

For background, our founding market, the Kingfield Farmers Market, began in 2001. Then we launched the Fulton Farmers Market in 2011. Last year we did a limited trial run of the Nokomis Farmers Market, which was so successful we moved it to a weekly market throughout the summer this year.

It made sense to create an overarching organization to manage all of the markets. The new name is a reflection that our markets have their roots in each of the neighborhoods they serve.

The Kingfield Neighborhood Association, the Fulton Neighborhood Association, and the Hale-Page Diamond Lake Community Association planted the first seeds of our markets with their founding grants. Many of our most regular patrons come from the immediate blocks around the markets. Our board members and volunteers are community members, contributing to what remains a largely volunteer-led organization. And our yearly budget relies heavily on support from our sponsors, which are local businesses serving our same communities.

Come down and check out what we have to offer at this year’s Holiday Market:

— Produce: carrots, beets, radishes, onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, winter squash, apples, shallots, leeks, Brussels sprouts, turnips, rutabaga, cabbage, spinach, salad greens, mustard greens, garlic, dried beans from Big River Farm, Blia and Family Vegetable Garden, Brand Farm, Clover Bee Farm, Davidson’s Farm, Havlicek’s Orchard, Mary Dirty Face Farm, Peter’s Pumpkins & Carmen’s Corn, Uproot Farm, & Waxwing Farm.

— Eggs, meat, and fish from Auntie Annie’s Fields, Sunshine Harvest Farm, and Wild Run Salmon.

— Cheese from Singing Hills Goat Dairy and LoveTree Farm.

— Baked goods: Doughnuts from Bogart’s Doughnuts and bagels from Rise Bagel.

— Canned and packaged goods: Honeys, jams, maple syrup, fruit & beverage syrups, pickled & fermented goods, granola, and soups from Alchemy Dame, Bee Brews, The Beez Kneez, Hazelwood Creek, HeathGlen’s Farm & Kitchen, Kiss My Cabbage, Martha’s Joy, Patti’s Granola, Soupanadas, & Walsh Ridge Farm.

— Teas & tinctures from Red Clover Apothocary.

— Candies and confections from Groveland Confections and Sweet Jules Gifts.

— Food trucks and prepared food vendors: Hot breakfast & lunch from Brava, Kabomelettte, & The Moral Omnivore.

— Coffee & beans from Arrowwood Coffee Roasters and Café Palmira.

— Artisan crafted goods: hats, mittens, bird feeders, jewelry, pottery, candles from Barn Swallow Garden, Jules Loft, Idlewilde, Pottery for the Soul, & Wyrd Sisters.

All that, plus beer and wine available for purchase by the glass, and live music to boot.

We think you’ll find the perfect mix to brighten your day, help you create a great Thanksgiving and make your home extra cozy for the winter as you reunite the things summer not-so-cruelly kept you from.

Now that the weather’s a little colder, perhaps instead of thinking about how far away April is — shudder — you can brush up on your puzzle skills, catch up on the year’s best movies, of course, do some cooking with local ingredients. Isn’t it nice to settle down sometimes?

Steffen Ryan has served on the Neighborhood Roots Farmers Market board since 2013. He grew up on an organic dairy farm in North Dakota (of all places), works at public relations agency Weber Shandwick and can frequently be found checking out local arts and events around the metro.