Live music, local produce, and handcrafted gifts and jewelry…you cannot ask for much more than that. A hipster’s and non-hipster’s dream alike, the HOPE farmers market that takes place year round every Sunday has a little something for everybody. The HOPE Farmers market is a part of the non-profit group Helping Other People Everywhere, an organization committed to helping artists promote social change through their work. Meeka, my Siberian Husky and I decided to check it out this last Sunday morning.
It was the perfect day to be outdoors. In the mid 80’s it was peculiarly cool for August in Texas. Meeka and I took full advantage of this as we both enjoyed the fresh air on the car ride over; a nice change from the usual blasting air conditioning. I have to be honest and say that farmers markets are both my least and favorite weekend activities; I absolutely adore meandering through the stalls with a cup of coffee and a fresh pastry, however find waking up before 10 am on a coveted day off utterly blasphemous. The HOPE farmers market was looking out for me. Open later in the day than most farmers markets, not opening until 10:00 and staying open until 2:00, they cater to those of us who are slightly less chipper in the wee hours of the morning.
I arrived a little after 10:30 to free and ample parking and the market in full swing. It is a smaller farmers market located on the East side and boasts a charming,laid back atmosphere. I was pleased to be among a nice sized amount of friendly people and not have to navigate my way through lines and large crowds. Also unlike a traditional farmers market, HOPE does have local produce however also has other items available for purchase. There was jewelry, olive oils and vinaigrettes, handmade bags, and ready to eat prepared food as well. Some of the seasonal produce items I was excited about were the okra from Johnson’s Backyard Garden, and summer squash from Engel Farms.
A few of the goodies I snagged to take home were a handmade beaded wrap bracelet for myself from local artist Robin Herskowitz, and garlic infused olive oil for a gift from Texas Olive Ranch of Kyle, Texas. I had been excited to try out some of the ready to eat food from regularly returning vendors offering vegan Indian food and gourmet coffee however Meeka, not quite one year old yet, had other plans that involved dragging me to every dog she saw and not allowing another free hand for food or beverage. Obedience issues aside, the market was extremely pet friendly, a few vendors supplying water bowls for our furry friends and even an organic dog treat on the way the way out, deserved or not.
The market also has regular live music, a staple here in the capital city. Hello Caller, a self-described “dark folk, jangle rock” band from Austin played on the quaint shady stage at 11:00, just in time for me to catch them.
All in all it was a pleasant late Sunday morning. I hope to return this Sunday to sample the faire and pick up some more fresh veggies, either sans my four legged kiddo or plus another set of human hands.
Catch the next Farmers Market, next and every Sunday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm located at East 5th and Waller Street.
Blog by Katie