The Ocean City Farmers Market kicks off today, June 26, and will be held from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Wednesday through Sept. 4, on the grounds of Ocean City Tabernacle.
The weekly farmers market, which is sponsored by the Greater Ocean City Chamber of Commerce, gathers about 30 local farm vendors and food artisans, offering a variety of homegrown produce and homemade products, from fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs to jams, honey and cheeses.
"It's just the most fabulous assortment you've ever seen," said Antoinette Albert, the vice president of operations at Ocean City Tabernacle, which lends its outdoor space to the city for the weekly event. "If you want good produce, just be here any Wednesday. They really bring out the best of the best."
The farmers market also includes a section of about 30 craft vendors, set up in the Sixth Street parking lot of the firehouse, selling their homemade jewelry, birdhouses, artwork and more.
Mosaic artist Kevan Breitinger, a seasonal resident of Ocean City who will sell handmade mosaics at the market this summer and has sold her homemade hummus on the foodie side of the market the past few summers, said the Ocean City farmers market is a worth a visit.
"I've sold my art at craft fairs all across the country, and I have to say the Ocean City Farmers Market is a great venue, and it attracts a great crowd," she said. "If you're nearby, it's really a must-go."
Sixteen-year-old Ocean City resident Cat Gleason, who is known at the farmers market as "Pie Girl," will be back this year for her second season, selling her homemade personal-size pies to raise money for Ocean City's needy population.
Gleason donates most of her proceeds made at the market to the weekly feeding program and food cupboard at her church, St. Peter's United Methodist Church in Ocean City.
She said her experience last year at the farmers market went better than she expected and she's excited to be back.
"I definitely never expected it to go that well," Gleason said. "I remember the first week we made 20 pies and my mom said to me, 'If we don't sell out, we'll make less next week.' We sold out in the first hour."
On the typical Wednesday last summer, Gleason made about 100 pies and sold out every week but one. Her pies are all handmade using local ingredients whenever possible including Hammonton blueberries and locally grown peaches, which she buys at a booth a few down from hers.
"Right after the market was over each week, we'd just go over a couple booths and buy some peaches," she said.
Contact Elisa Lala:
If you go
What: The Ocean City Farmer's Market
When: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Wednesday through September 4
Where: The grounds of Ocean City Tabernancle, 550 Wesley Ave., Ocean City
For info: visit the Greater Ocean City Chamber of Commerce at oceancityvacation.com.