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Six-year-old Lauren works her family's stall at the Boulder Farmers' Market.EXPAND
Six-year-old Lauren works her family's stall at the Boulder Farmers' Market.
Linnea Covington

The Boulder Farmers' Market Kicks Off Another Farming Season

While Denver sports fans celebrated the Colorado Rockies' home-opener weekend, folks in Boulder came out to enjoy the pleasant weather for opening day of the Boulder Farmers' Market on Saturday, April 6. The morning couldn't have been finer as the sun shone, the temperature hovered around 60 degrees and the normal pesky spring wind remained calm. Farmers, artisans and shoppers enjoyed the launch of another growing season, shaking off a chilly winter to dig into spring produce.

"We spent months waiting and dreaming about warm weather and spectacular produce, and it's here," said chef/farmer Eric Skokan of Black Cat Farm, Black Cat Bistro and Bramble & Hare. "Today the real magic is seeing all the friends and community I haven't seen all winter; it's like a homecoming."

Black Cat chef/farmer Eric Skokan and his market manager, Xavier Dyson.EXPAND
Black Cat chef/farmer Eric Skokan and his market manager, Xavier Dyson.
Linnea Covington

Though the morning didn't get too packed, plenty of people wandered around sampling pretzels, salsas and sauces, chatting with growers about what they had in stock and picking up prepared food to take to the vast lawn right next to the market.

Opening day at the Boulder Farmers' Market, April 6, 2019.EXPAND
Opening day at the Boulder Farmers' Market, April 6, 2019.
Linnea Covington

Tender greens and baby lettuce filled the stalls, along with thick winter carrots and other stored crops such as potatoes, onions and parsnips. At Cure Organic Farm, this was the mainstay, along with fresh eggs and the promise that more will be coming as spring continues. Black Cat Farm had tons of tasty greens, a fridge full of pork and lamb and a stack of lamb-skin pelts — something, Skokan says, he will have more of down the road.

"It's good, it feels like summer has officially started," said Jake Hader, a farm hand at Black Cat Farm in Niwot, over a basket of Siberian kale.

Fat carrots in many varieties were found at the Aspen Moon Farm stand.EXPAND
Fat carrots in many varieties were found at the Aspen Moon Farm stand.
Linnea Covington

Over at Aspen Moon Farm, the highlights included black radishes, several carrot varieties and beautiful orbs of yellow onions that looked almost too perfect to eat. Toohey & Sons Organic, which is only doing the Boulder market this year, had an abundance of lettuce, and Honeyacre Enterprises offered hothouse green beefsteak tomatoes and one lone red one. The mushrooms at Hazel Dell Mushrooms proved bountiful, and Ollin Farms offered plenty of pretty purple daikons.

Hazel Dell Mushrooms has fungi for days.EXPAND
Hazel Dell Mushrooms has fungi for days.
Linnea Covington

While the produce hasn't started to really pour in yet, there were plenty of other options for shoppers — namely, meat. Jodar Farms offered pasture-raised chicken, pork and fresh eggs. Triple M Bar Ranch had cuts of lamb, and at nearby Wisdom's Natural Poultry, eggs and chicken were the hot items. And to help home gardeners get off to a good start, John Ellis, one of the founding members of the Boulder market, had hefty bags of compost ready to go.

John Ellis of Farmer John's at the Boulder Farmers' Market.EXPAND
John Ellis of Farmer John's at the Boulder Farmers' Market.
Linnea Covington

"What else would I do on Saturdays?" Ellis mused. "It's my social outlet, since I work the other days of the week."

Other stands served ready-to-eat fare like the berry pies at My Mom's Pie, buffalo-stuffed pasties from Shamane's Bakeshoppe, and tamales with salsas from La Esmeralda. Guests also visited the temporary food hall in the center of the market, with favorites including pizzas from Laudisio, Vietnamese crepes from Savory Saigon and a stunning pan of paella from Cafe Aion.

A giant pan of paella cooked by Cafe Aion at the Boulder Farmers' Market.EXPAND
A giant pan of paella cooked by Cafe Aion at the Boulder Farmers' Market.
Linnea Covington

As customers, farmers and food professionals weaved in and out of the booths and people, the sun shone on contented faces. While Front Range residents know next weekend's market could easily be snowed out, it was hard to find a downtrodden look among the crowd as they stuffed their faces and bags with wholesome food.

Visit the Boulder Country Farmers' Market from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Saturday now until November 23 on 13th Street between Canyon Boulevard and Arapahoe Avenue. The Longmont market, at 9595 Nelson Road, is open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays until November 23 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. BCFM's other markets, at Union Station and in Lafayette, will open in May. See the organization's website for more details.

Cure Organic Farm brings early produce to the Boulder Farmers' Market.EXPAND
Cure Organic Farm brings early produce to the Boulder Farmers' Market.
Linnea Covington
Purple daikon radishes from Ollin Farms.EXPAND
Purple daikon radishes from Ollin Farms.
Linnea Covington
Tasty drinks from Savory Saigon.EXPAND
Tasty drinks from Savory Saigon.
Linnea Covington
Xavier Dyson sells greens for Black Cat Farm.EXPAND
Xavier Dyson sells greens for Black Cat Farm.
Linnea Covington
Wisdom's Natural Poultry brought the chicken and the egg.EXPAND
Wisdom's Natural Poultry brought the chicken and the egg.
Linnea Covington
Tender greens at Black Cat Farm's stall at the Boulder Farmers' Market.EXPAND
Tender greens at Black Cat Farm's stall at the Boulder Farmers' Market.
Linnea Covington
Vapor Distillery has its own Boulder County tasting room but also sets up a stand at the farmers' market.EXPAND
Vapor Distillery has its own Boulder County tasting room but also sets up a stand at the farmers' market.
Linnea Covington
The wood-fired pizza oven at the Laudisio stand.EXPAND
The wood-fired pizza oven at the Laudisio stand.
Linnea Covington
Vietnamese crepes from Savory Saigon.EXPAND
Vietnamese crepes from Savory Saigon.
Linnea Covington
The Boulder Farmers' Market had good weather for its opening day.EXPAND
The Boulder Farmers' Market had good weather for its opening day.
Linnea Covington
Baked goods from Breadworks.EXPAND
Baked goods from Breadworks.
Linnea Covington
A sole surviving tomato from the haul brought by Honeyacre Enterprises.EXPAND
A sole surviving tomato from the haul brought by Honeyacre Enterprises.
Linnea Covington
Local honey from Lazy Bee Ranch.EXPAND
Local honey from Lazy Bee Ranch.
Linnea Covington
Market-goers in Boulder enjoy the large lawn next to the stalls.EXPAND
Market-goers in Boulder enjoy the large lawn next to the stalls.
Linnea Covington
A savory pasty from Shamane's Bakeshoppe came stuffed with veggies and chunks of tender bison.EXPAND
A savory pasty from Shamane's Bakeshoppe came stuffed with veggies and chunks of tender bison.
Linnea Covington

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