Author Archive | Alana Chernila

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the last bite: WHO’D A THUNKED IT

Market Magic Captivates Kids

Child with Cookie

Over the last few years that I have worked at the farmers market in Great Barrington, I have found that children are the market’s best customers. Sure, many little ones enter the transformed parking lot as if they didn’t want to be there, stubbornly trailing behind. But after 10 or 20 feet, anyone can witness the change— and then it is the small hands that touch the radishes and rhubarb first. While their parents run into this or that friend, the kids inhale the smell of fresh food just dug and picked, and they will even take a vegetable from the table and shove it into their mouth before anyone can tell them otherwise.

Each year, the farmers market begins in May, and winter-weary customers emerge from their houses in search of fresh food, rubbing their eyes in the sun. This year, the first market provided some early hardy greens, beets stored from the late fall and pale, sweet, spring-dug carrots. Midway through the morning, a family came over to our table, and both parents eyed the assortment critically. “No lettuce,” the wife reported to the husband. “No lettuce,” the husband repeated to the wife. Between them, a little face, topped in curls shaped by last night’s pillow, peered at me.… Read the rest

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