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Saturday, May 7, 2016

Downtown Ventura Certified Farmers’ Market celebrates its 30th anniversary



Since 1986, Downtown Ventura Certified Farmers’ Market brings a wonderful outdoor shopping experience to locals every Saturday. Local California farmers and artisan showcase their freshest, vine and tree ripened fruits and vegetables, herbs, nuts, olive oil, juices, jams, jellies, flowers, plants, honey, cheese, meats, eggs, fish, and baked goods. If you’re longing for some breakfast or lunch, hot food vendors are onsite too.

On June 4, 2016, Downtown Ventura Certified Farmers’ Market will be celebrating its 30th anniversary. From 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., the celebration will include cooking demonstrations by cookbook author and chef, Amelia Saltsman, musical entertainment, non-profit community booths, children’s activities, and more. Scratch FoodTruck will be there with their tasty menu along with other local artisans.

Here are some purveyors you don’t want to miss:

McCloskey Nursery is family-owned and has been farming since 1898 in Goleta, CA. They have grown so many different crops over the years from pampas grass for horses, tomatoes, and soybeans during World War II. Today, their main crops are orchids, avocados, and cherimoyas.

Fair Hills Apple Farm is a family-owned, organic farm in Paso Robles, CA. The farm began in 1992 when Nancy and David Rydell purchased 100+ acres and planted their first apple orchard. Stone fruits like peaches, nectarines, apricots, and cherries are coming into season and will be available through August/September. July and early August is when the apple season will start up again, with over 19 varieties of apples to choose from. Apple cider is another one of their products which is also sold at the market and available year round. You can also find their apples in Whole Foods Markets in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara locations.

Watkins Cattle Company raises 100% range fed (free range) cattle. John and Shane Watkins run 260 head of cattle on 1,000 acres of rich pasture in Cuyama, CA and Canada Larga Ranch (3,500 acres) in Ojai, CA. The beef is aged for 23 days before the final butchering and packaging processes. The different cuts they sell are roast (7-bone, rump, pot), brisket, tri-tip, heart, tongue (lengua), ribs (back and short), steaks (flat iron, skirt, New York, ribeye, cowboy, filet mignon), and cut/ground meats (fajita stir-fry, stew, taco, ground). They also sell pork (butt/picnic roast, ham hock, chops, bacon, ground, hot Italian/jalapeno cheddar sausages) and chicken (whole/half, breast, thigh, drumsticks, wings).

Buon Gusto Farms is an organic olive farm located in Ventura Valley where the trees get the warmth of the summer sun and the cooling ocean breeze. Olives are hand-harvested and cold-pressed within hours of harvest to ensure the highest quality extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). They also have flavored EVOO including Peppery-Basil, Mandarin Orange, Garlic, Meyer Lemon, and Garlic-Basil. They also sell balsamic vinegars including Special Balsamic, Champagne Pear, Fig, and Pomegranate that pair perfectly with their EVOO. Olive oil can also be made into soap as EVOO is a natural nutritive and moisturizer with scents like jasmine, lavender, lemongrass, and mandarin.

If you are a Ventura local, visiting Ventura, or just passing through on your way north, stop by the Downtown Ventura Certified Farmers’ Market to pick up some fresh, healthy produce and products to enjoy at your leisure.

For more information:
Corner of Santa Clara & Palm Streets
Ventura, CA
Hours: Every Saturday (rain or shine) from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
SNAP/EBT customers welcome. Redemption authorized at the Market Information Booth.
Due to California state healthy laws, pets are not allowed in the market, except service animals.

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