Burlington County hosts years-long farmers markets

Residents shop for homemade crafts, produce and baked goods.

Photo Credits: Christine Harkinson: Vendors at the Burlington County Farmers Market on Nov. 20 shopped for crafts, jewelry and fresh produce. The second holiday market will be on Dec. 4.

Burlington County’s Holiday Market last month will be repeated on Dec. 4 at the Burlington County Agricultural Center.

“We never want to be overwhelmed by a lot of craft vendors, except for the holiday markets,” said Mary Pat Robbie, director of the department of resource conservation. “It gives everybody a chance to start on their holiday shopping.”

Diane Gabler, a farmer and owner of Pinelands Produce in Pemberton, sold microgreens, radishes, carrots, lettuce and spinach during the Nov. 20 market. She has been a vendor at the event for three years.

“This is always a (really) great market,” she noted. “It’s really good; everyone comes out (and) it’s great because it’s right at the end of the season and you prepare everything for this market.”

The November market was the first for pastry chef Towanda Larkins. She makes traditional flavored pies and vegan and gluten free desserts.

“This is such a great market, it (really) is,” she said. “So far, I’ve always done well, and it seems like each year is (just) getting better.”

According to Robbie, the latest season was the most successful for the farmers market.

“All of our vendors have been (very) pleased; they’ve been able to sell their merchandise,” she explained. “It’s (just) been a real success for all of them, and most importantly, our farmer vendors.”

Charlene Carlisle, owner and operator of Little Hooves Romneys farm, has been living there for 35 years. She had fresh pressed apple cider and farm fresh eggs for sale last month.

“We’re a great community and everybody’s happy for the holiday,” Carlisle said. “It’s (very) warming to the heart for the holiday season. Everybody’s here buying (stuff) and friendly and happy.”

Vendors last month sold everything from jewelry to homemade crafts and plenty of fresh produce.

“We have a lot of your root vegetables that are always big this time of year,” said Robbie. “Cauliflower, brussels sprouts, acorn squash, butternut squash, beets, potatoes and onions.”

Kim Batten, owner of 1895 Organic Farm, has been a vendor at the market for 14 years.

“The market has grown — obviously from 14 years ago, there were only a few of (us) vendors here — and now to see what it has done and gone to in this amount of time is really a nice thing,” she said.

“The county … couldn’t have done any better with (it). It’s just a great market.”