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Fall Market Has Plenty To Offer

  Hover over image for captions or to pause slide show.              Photos by Liz Cezat
There are only three market days left until the 2017 Farmer’s Market ends on October 26. If you haven’t yet been, now is a good time to go. The Northville Chamber of Commerce runs the market on Thursdays, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the corner of Sheldon (Center St.) and 7 Mile, across from Northville Downs. There are plenty of mums, corn stalks, pumpkins and fall vegetables, including peppers, Brussel sprouts on the stalk, eggplant and more. Crisp apples and juicy pears top the fall fruit selection. And you don’t have to visit a cider mill to get fresh apple cider and doughnuts. Many vendors are also selling Halloween decorations.

Northville Chamber of Commerce President Jody Humphries noted one major improvement this year – the shed that serves as the chamber’s on-site office was painted with a colorful, market-style mural. Two board members got the job done. Lauren Romeo lined up the artist from California and Realtor Patti Mullen paid for the paint and the artist’s fee. Sponsorships to the market help keep costs affordable for the growers and crafters who sell produce and wares.

Among the 70-plus vendors, Humphries notes, “We’ve got some great new seasonal vendors this year – producers of fish, cheese and meat. We have many longtime growers – including Priellipp Farms & Greenhouse, and Windcrest Farms. They’ve been at the market for over 20 years.”

A visit to the market in early October yielded this crop of vendors:

Give and grow mushrooms – Owner Vincent Sanna offers gourmet mushrooms and black garlic. These farmers grow mushrooms in a Chesterfield warehouse using polyethylene bags. They sell at six area markets, including Detroit’s Eastern Market. Sanna says, “There’s a good vendor mix here in Northville. There are lots of regulars.” That means repeat buyers. “I’ve been coming to this market for five years. It gets better every year.”

M or M Creations – Margaret (Peggy) and Marvin are a married couple who operate the business. She makes soap and wind chimes. He enjoys woodworking and makes deluxe cutting boards and tiny black walnut baskets. He also makes a novelty item: an oversize chicken with a space to hold a pot of flowers. It is made from repurposed golf cart tires and the tire rim serves as the base. It’s a colorful way to display mums this time of year. They also sell Halloween items.

Lonesome Pines Beef – Jackie and Jerry Goddard, a married couple from Nashville, MI, proudly state, “We are the farm.” They sell packaged frozen grass-fed beef, ground steak and pork – all USDA approved. They don’t use chemicals in their cattle feed. The meat is stored in four large freezers inside a trailer that looks like a country store. “Some of our customers have celiac disease and are happy to have found us,” Jackie said.

The Fusilier Farm – Melissa and Travis Fusilier, a married couple, work in his family business together. She lived on a farm that did cash crops and counts herself as a 7th generation grower. Travis is a second generation grower of vegetables. Now the harvest consists of peppers, eggplant, Brussel sprouts and more. A trick they learned about the sprouts is to cut off the tops about one month before harvesting so they grow plumper. They bring their infant son, Orin, to market with them, and he is content to be held or placed in his portable bed. They are counting on him to join the family business when he’s of age. Travis fondly remembers going to markets with his parents when he was young and relishes selling produce at the market as his livelihood.

Some of the vendors’ products and produce end up being sold in local grocery stores. “That’s a gain for the seller but a loss for the market,” Humphries said. “It shows how the market gives some vendors a boost to grow their sales in larger retail markets. Our growers and crafters are all fantastic.”

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