Saturday Morning at the Pleasantville Farmers Market

Winning graphics at the Pleasantville Farmers Market

It was a sunny Saturday morning when we visited the Pleasantville Farmers Market, an indoor/outdoor, rain-or-shine, all-year, and non-profit public market. After a bitter winter on the East Coast, it felt like one of the first harbingers of spring.

Spring daffodils at Pleasantville Farmers Market
Spring daffodils at Pleasantville Farmers Market

The backstory: Changing places

Our recent move from Chappaqua to Pleasantville, (Westchester County) New York was definitely a “big move”—although we only moved a couple of miles away to the next dot on the map. Big, because it entailed painful downsizing, decluttering and decathecting from a home filled with memories, where we had lived for more than 20 years.

After our boxes (or at least most of them) were finally unpacked, we began to enjoy our new digs and explore our walkable little village, whose history dates back to 1695. Pleasantville’s growth was spurred by the arrival of one of the first street railways in the U.S., connecting New York City to the Hudson Valley. Now part of Metro-North, the railroad spurred the growth of this bedroom-community with approximately 7,150 residents.

The farmers market, which began some twenty years ago, was another effort to draw people to the village and breathe life into the downtown area. The village, especially its restaurants, got another commercial boost with the opening of the Jacob Burns Film Center in a landmarked building that once housed an old movie theater.

Pleasantville's Jacob Burns Film Center at night
Pleasantville’s Jacob Burns Film Center at night

The center shows independent films, documentaries and sponsors creative talks with moviemakers, producers and artists.

What’s at the Pleasantville Farmers Market?

We are huge fans of farmers markets both here and abroad. With more than 60 vendors, the Pleasantville Farmers Market is the largest and one of the oldest in Westchester County.

Vendors getting ready: First come thee trucks...
Vendors getting ready: First come the trucks…
Multigrain or sourdough?
Multigrain or sourdough?

Most of the vendors (including winemakers) arrive here from other parts of the agriculture-rich Hudson Valley that stretches from New York City to Albany. A fusion of aromas wafts through the air whetting your appetite to sample and shop.

We passed tables manned by pickle vendors, fishmongers, farmers, florists and bakers.

Organic veggies from Neversink Farm
Organic veggies from Neversink Farm
Hudson Valley Duck
Hudson Valley Duck
"Peanut Principle" flavored peanut butters
“Peanut Principle” flavored peanut butters

This farmers market, like many others around the world, offers shoppers not only an opportunity to mingle with neighbors but also to sample new foods before they buy.

Because most of the foods are local, you know from where they came. This visit was in the midst of a 16-state E-coli outbreak that urged people to avoid any Romaine lettuce but we had no fear in buying greens at the market.

The outdoor market is held on Memorial Plaza, beside the Metro-North railroad station, between April and November; the rest of the year it’s held at the nearby middle school.

If you can't wait to take it home...
For those who can’t wait to take it home…

IF YOU GO

  • Pleasantville Farmer’s Market Official Website. You can see all the vendors and check out any special events.
A sign of spring
A sign of spring

The market is about a 40-minute ride from Manhattan to Pleasantville on Metro North; the train station is adjacent to the market. If you arrive by car, there are many municipal lots nearby.


Some tips for visiting this (and other) farmers markets:

  • Always check opening hours and locations (which may change seasonally or due to weather).
  • Try to arrive close to the opening time when there is more stock available and fewer crowds.
  • Remember: Some vendors rotate and may not necessarily be there every week. For example, the Knife Sharpener only comes some weeks.
  • Don’t forget to bring your reusable shopping bags with you.
  • Before you buy, take a whirl around the entire market. Multiple vendors often sell similar products and you may prefer one to another.
  • Bring cash. Some vendors may accept credit cards but many do not.
  • Remember that the costs of products (many of which are organic, locally-produced and higher quality) are usually greater at farmers markets than at supermarkets.

 

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25 Comments

  1. We share your love of public markets, whether they be ‘municipal’ or ‘farmers’ markets. What a delightful treat to have so close to your new home. Each time you reference the act of the downsizing, I get a stab in the heart, having just done the same and can relate to the painful experience (although filled with happy memories) it was.

  2. I love farmers’ markets like this. We are fortunate to have a great one nearby as well. Wonderful tips – especially about the reusable bags and checking out the stalls before buying.

  3. Love that tip about the USDA National Farmers Market d!!! I love them and Pleasantville looks extra special!!! Just 40 minutes from Manhattan.

  4. I love local farmer’s markets and can’t wait for ours to open. It’s one of my favorite springtime activities. In the meantime, I might have to come to yours – it looks wonderful!

  5. Farmer’s markets are a favorite of mine, and I will be as delighted as you are if I can find one close to my next “downsized” residence. When I travel, it’s a good way to see what’s ripe and in season when I’m eating in restaurants. We have a wonderful year round market here in Boston. I believe it’s the only indoor market in the country to carry local vendors exclusively.

  6. Congrats on settling into your new home. I have to say that Pleasantville sounds like a lovely place to live. We’re going through the downsizing process ourselves right now and it’s not fun. The farmers market looks like a perfect place to take a break and enjoy the local foods.

  7. Never been to Pleasantville and probably never will go 😀 But just wanted to say that we love markets too! Best way to buy local products directly from people making it. You don;t only but the product but also the story behind it :))

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