Late August’s triple-digit highs make it tempting to hide out and lay low, but the Certified Farmers’ Market held indoors on Saturdays through mid-September in Palm Springs offers reasons for families to wake up and venture out.
The Aug. 22 edition features Family Nutrition Day for the second year as a community outreach to educate families about the importance of nutrition and supporting the local farmers who collectively make up the Certified Farmers’ Markets across greater Palm Springs.
Market mornings provide an opportunity for families to enjoy farm-fresh juices and artisanal bagels, muffins, croissants, pastries and more as they shop to a soundtrack of live, local music.
Children first to arrive at the market will be rewarded with free mini, frozen, Chi Pops made with ingredients featuring a tantalizing variety of delicious market fruits and produce. Kids can also help paint a Fresh Food Mural as a collective art project. Other free programs include a market vendor Sampling Scavenger Hunt with prizes and family music by Ken GreenPaint Morning will allow kids, ages 8 and up, to receive art instruction from professional artist and instructor, Kellie Gillette-Wood, on the main stage from 9- 10 a.m.
A suggested donation of $10 per child will benefit the Palm Springs Cultural Center’s nutrition education outreach programs in the local schools. Kids receive guided art instruction to paint a still-life of fruits and vegetables. Space is limited to 20 kids and pre-registration is requested by email to: email@example.com.
Seasonal ingredients picked locally at their peak of freshness bring market-goers back time and again to shop the three outdoor farmers’ markets in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and La Quinta from September through June.
Two free cooking and nutrition education classes will be led by Lori Cohen-Sanford of Nourishfoods in the Pavilion kitchen. Pre-registration is required and space is limited for each class. From 9-9:45 a.m., kids ages 10 to 14 can get hands-on cooking instruction to prepare fresh “squashta” and roasted market vegetables with a variety of simple and healthy sauces and mix-ins to create their own signature squashta dishes.
From 10:30-11:15 a.m., families will learn ways to incorporate fresh, healthful ingredients into their daily meals. Strategies for shopping together, preparing meals together, and creating connected and unplugged mealtime will be topics. Kids ages 6 to 10 with an accompanying parent will participate in an interactive discussion including market produce sampling and recipes to take home. Pre-registration is required to ensure space is available by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shoppers can interact with the vendors for valuable tips on how to prepare fresh items at home.
From the first weekend in October through May, the outdoor markets in Palm Springs, Palm Desert and La Quinta will resume with a fun, new twist.
Beginning Oct. 7, the weekly Wednesday markets in Palm Desert will become night markets, running 4-8 p.m. The evening hours provide an opportunity to shop mid-week after school and work, and will offer expanded prepared food options so shoppers can grab a bite on site after they shop to stock up for meals for the remainder of the week. The Palm Springs Saturday morning markets and La Quinta Sunday morning markets will operate with regular hours from 8 a.m. to noon.
For more information about Family Nutrition Day, contact Megan Goehring at email@example.com or 760-880-4917. Visit www.certifiedfarmersmarket.org for more information about the Certified Farmers’ Markets.
Lori Cohen-Sanford is a private/personal chef, cooking class instructor, and owner of Nourishfoods Organic Meal Services. Follow her on Twitter @nourishfoodsps or connect with her on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nourishfoodie.