Adam Colvin from the Colvin Family Farm in Cumberland County had an impressive assortment of produce Saturday.
Although the Market Square Farmers’ Market doesn’t officially open until this week, several of the regular farmers showed up this past Saturday to give us a kind of “sneak peek.”
The weather was iffy, which was unfortunate because it also was the day for the Dogwood Arts Festival‘s annual Chalk Walk when artists of all ages spread over Market Square and Krutch Park creating amazing works of art on the sidewalks. When the rain did come in a torrent without much warning, many works of art were ruined because the downpour swamped the plastic folks hurriedly taped over their fragile chalk masterpieces. It was sad. But many came back on Sunday to finish them — or start over.
Even the rain couldn’t dampen spirits this weekend, though. The return of the Market Square Farmers’ Market just heralds such good things that I couldn’t get the smile off my face for two days. I noticed many others in the same frame of mind. So here’s a look at just of few of the wonderful weekend activities in my favorite place — downtown Knoxville.
Bob Due was back, thank goodness. We bought some of his green onions and used them on a salad for lunch.
Aren't they beautiful?
Rick Rickerman had a wide assortment of loaves from which to choose. We selected an asiago with sun-dried tomatoes and herbs. It is awesome.
The Cruze Farm girls had a cute "milk bar" set up and were doing a brisk business.
Folks were raving about the biscuits available at the Cruze Farm booth. "It's like India on a biscuit," Charlotte Tolley said describing a curried concoction they were selling.
We bought strawberries from Janet King of King's Hydrofarm in South Knoxville.
Lucy Wisner of Wisner Farms has the most amazing focaccia. We bought this one and had it for lunch on Saturday and Sunday. I can't wait to get more next week.
Napping Cat Flower Farm is back with these sweet bouquets. I'm so glad.
This is the best thing I've had all year! Shannon Meadows of Mountain Meadows Farm told me how to cook it: Warm a little olive oil in a pan, throw in a minced garlic clove and the broccoli rabe with a little salt. Saute five minutes -- at most. It was delicious.
Gregory Blankenship of Gregory's Greenhouse offered to repot the herb garden I bought from him last year.
Isn't it beautiful?
Sad sign. Every year the Farmers' Market commissions a poster by Yee Haw Industries. This is the ninth and last year. Yee Haw is closing.
After the shopping spree, I strolled around to check on the progress at the Chalk Walk. It looked like they were off to a good start.
Ivan Cornejo had started with a beautiful eye.
And then — boom! — the downpour!
Everyone scrambled to cover thier work. But the sky had just opened up with buckets of water coming down.
This one was ruined.
I watched the artist draw tears on this one. I'm sure he felt like crying, too.
But, in a few hours, the rain stopped and folks stayed outside enjoying themselves. The Dogwood Arts Festival said for the artists to come back on Sunday, the original rain date.
Some folks passed the time watching the marimba player in Krutch Park.
Others strolled around looking at the new art installed as part of Dogwood's "Art in Public Places" program. This piece by Mark Krucke is called "Fortitude." I like it.
I went back on Sunday to check on the Chalk Walk and saw some amazing things. See if you don’t agree.
I loved this portrait of Pat Summitt by Lauryn Darby.
This one is by Chris Bell.
This colorful piece is by Kalyn Smith, Erik Vass and Emily Hoffman.
Here is Ivan Cornejo finishing up his piece.
I liked this cute octopus by Leah Davis, Haley Stephens and Natalie McQuicken.
And this adorable fairy by Meiling Finn, which won the first place prize in the middle school by a single artist category.
This portrait of Albert Einstein by Anna Simanis was impressive.
So was this portrait of a woman by Keith Anders.
Andrew Tyler, who is only six years old, created this Spider Man.