News Column

Local produce featured at Earth's Bounty

June 5, 2014

By Michael Stewart, The Meridian Star, Miss.



June 05--MERIDIAN -- Earth's Bounty returns Saturday to Singing Brakeman Park in Meridian with live entertainment, baked goods, crafts and lots of produce grown by local farmers.

The event that runs from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. is expected to bring in about 40 vendors selling everything from cane syrup, goat's milk soap, plants and more.

Several members of the Meridian Area Farmers Market will be on hand as well, offering locally grown squash, cucumbers, new potatoes, beans, peas, corn, peppers and zucchini.

"Everybody is starting to get their local produce in," Chatham Farm spokesperson Pamela Dixon Boyd said.

Early peaches are also coming and and will be offered, as will plums.

Chef D, aka Darryl Johnson, will host a live cooking demonstration at 11 a.m. using fresh produce from area farmers and musician Allen Hunt will provide live entertainment, Meridian Main Street Program Manager Debby Delshad said.

Almost Home Animal Rescue will have pets up for adoption and food vendors will include The Little Griddle and sausage by Jack Brown.

"The homemade hushpuppies are always a big hit," Delshad said.

Presenting sponsor Greater Meridian Health Clinic will be on hand, as will members of the East Mississippi Master Gardeners club. There will also be children's activities, including a bounce house.

Earth's Bounty takes place on the first Saturday of each month from April to November.

Area residents don't have to wait for Earth's Bounty, however, to purchase fresh produce. Members of the Meridian Area Farmers Market are set up below the 18th Avenue bridge on Front Street from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Boyd said two local farmers recently quit selling produce because they were discouraged by a lack of sales at the Front Street location where farmers have operated for the last 40 years.

"In the mornings during the cooler hours of the day is actually harvesting time," Boyd said. "These farmers spend their harvesting time under the bridge trying to sell their produce and they are ignored. Then they go out in the heat of the day to pick the produce for the next day."

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(c)2014 The Meridian Star (Meridian, Miss.)

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Source: Meridian Star (MS)