MONROE, CT — Fresh produce from local growers, live entertainment and fun programs for children and families all factored into making the Monroe Farmers’ Market the No. 1 market in Connecticut for the second year in row.
Monroe’s market was chosen by members of the public in an online vote conducted by American Farmland Trust. The town’s farmers’ market also finished second in the Northeast and fifth in the nation.
“While we are a small town, I’ve learned to never underestimate this community’s love and appreciation of our farmers’ market, as demonstrated during this celebration,” said Kelly Plunkett, the market manager.
“Since the market’s inception in 2008, we have embraced a traditional model of farmers and vendors being required to grow, raise and make their own items — sourced right here in Connecticut,” she said. “It has helped us keep our focus and stay true to our mission each season by promoting agriculture in its various forms.”
“Each week, we take pride in highlighting our farmers and vendors through samplings and the launch of our Market Minis program this year, which encourages our next generation of consumers to engage with the various aspects of our market,” Plunkett said.
She said both programs were launched after the Monroe Farmers’ Market received funding for placing third in the country last year.
“It has been a true joy to participate in this annual celebration with the intention of supporting other markets, raising each other up, and sharing our mutual pride and dedication in this important agricultural initiative,” Plunkett said.
The town’s market’s win in the contest last year has had a tremendous impact on attendance and sales at this year’s market, according to Plunkett.
“We have been highly sought after and are having to turn away vendors every week that want to participate,” she said. “Also, 150 children signed up for the Market Minis program this year.”
The Monroe Farmers’ Market is held on the green, at the corner of Fan Hill Road and Route 111, every Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. Plunkett shared images from last Friday’s market: