FOR THE PAST TWO YEARS, since moving to northeastern Wisconsin, our daughter Miranda has raved about the outdoor Appleton Farm Market. She enthuses about the trolley and the entertainment, the fresh produce and flowers and crafts in this open air market in the heart of a downtown that mixes old and modern, buildings, that is.
So on a recent visit to Appleton, which is south of Green Bay for those of you unfamiliar with the Badger state’s cities, we took in the outdoor farm market on a cold and windy Saturday morning. It was mitten and fleece-wearing weather, although we’d left both behind in Minnesota, not expecting such cool temps.
Our daughter knows a secret, free parking spot (if you arrive early enough) just off the east end of College Avenue, the downtown street closed to motor traffic for several blocks during the market.
And so we set off from there to explore. I found myself lagging behind the daughter and husband as I chatted with vendors and took photos of this impressive market.
I must qualify here that I’ve previously been to the indoor Appleton Farm Market at City Center. Although nice, you just don’t get the same vibe, the same variety, as an outdoor affair. And I think that could be said for any upper Midwest market that moves indoors in the colder, non-growing season.
This Saturday marks the year’s final outdoor venue (from 8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.) in Appleton with the market moving into City Center from November through March (9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.). The trolley stopped running at the end of September.
And so we walked block after block through downtown Appleton as shoppers scooped up the last of the year’s sweet corn crop, sampled BBQ on pork, clustered at knitters’ booths to slip warm mittens onto cold hands, purchased $10 bouquets of fresh flowers, speared toothpicks into cubes of Wisconsin cheese…
While the entertainment was limited to two young musicians under a canopy, our daughter says warmer weather brings more entertainers.
But on this Saturday in early October, the vendors and shoppers provided entertainment enough for this Minnesotan.
To learn more about the clothing designed by Jen Nowak-Miller, click here to link to her Pearly Grey, “It’s All Retro Baby,” website.
TO SEE MORE APPLETON FARM MARKET photos, keep scrolling:
DISCLAIMER: I received a gift certificate from Downtown Appleton Inc. last year after posting about a previous visit to this city. That did not affect my decision to write again about Appleton nor the content of this post. And you can expect another story coming soon from Appleton on the Leonardo da Vinci exhibit there.
© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling