Calera Farmers Market starts in new location

A visitor to the market shows fresh okra to her daughters, explaining how she’ll prepare it for them to eat. (Reporter photo / Jessa Pease)

A visitor to the market shows fresh okra to her daughters, explaining how she’ll prepare it for them to eat. (Reporter photo / Jessa Pease)

By JESSA PEASE / Staff Writer 

CALERA—The sixth annual Calera Farmers Market kicked off June 2 with the same local products in a fresh setting.

Instead of being held at the park in Calera, the market moved to 8050 Alabama 70 under the Lumpkin oak trees across from the Publix shopping center. It will take place every Tuesday from 3-6 p.m. June 2 through Aug. 4.

“This is a more central location,” said new market manager Debi Mahon. “We’ve got a lot of traffic, so we are looking to catch folks on the way to work. So far we’ve had a great turnout. Last week was fantastic for the first week.”

Visitors can expect some of Calera Farmers Market’s original vendors such as Cavers Farm and Boozers Farms Chilton County, as well as some new faces such as Berdeaux’s 1945 Vintage Sauces.

Jay Goff, owner of Berdeaux’s, said he’s seen success so far at the markets, selling his homemade sauces like Simply Creole, a New Orleans barbeque sauce, and his Sweet Island Hawaiian cocktail sauce.

From Chilton peaches to handmade soaps to Emily’s Heirloom Pound Cakes, Mahon said every vendor has met set standards to sell its products at the market.

“They all have to have certain permits and we have to go out and make sure they are growing what they are selling, and they are,” Mahon said. “So we have good stuff and good vendors.”

Although this is Mahon’s first year as market manager, she is no stranger to the market. She and her husband spent years setting up and taking down tents for vendors, serving lemonade and preparing sandwiches for visitors before she decided to take on her new role.

“I started out bugging the market because I wanted a booth, but I don’t grow anything,” Mahon said. “I wanted to sell potholders and aprons, so I bugged the girl all summer long. Finally she said ‘if you want to help, come help.’”

Mahon hopes to have one or two additional vendors at the June 16 market and said she plans to grow the market more and more each year.

Other vendors include: R&R Farms, The Hitching Post, Skull Girl Soaps, Family Farms Fresh Produce, Evans Farms and Grandview Farm.