Local farmers markets are back, but with new rules

After a 12-week opening hiatus the Downtown Farmers’ Market situated under the south end of the JFX Expressway  finally opened on June 14, the last of the city’s outdoor markets – and the biggest by far – to do so.

But as with everything in today’s COVID-19 world, there are new rules, among them masks for all, extra spacing between vendors and customers; a dedicated person handling food and another handling money and credit cards; one-way aisles, and no fondling of the produce.  Prepared food offerings and alcohol were available, but no on-site preparation or on-site dining was allowed.  Free parking remains at Mercy Hospital’s garage.

Rules may change each week.  The market plans to be open into December.  Hours are 7 a.m. – noon each Sunday.

Closer to home, the Druid Hill Farmers Market is now open Wednesdays from 3:30 – 7:30 p.m.  through September.  There are fewer people, but the same rules apply.  It is located near the Rawlings Conservatory.

The Waverly Market on East 32nd and Barclay streets stayed open year-around as the pandemic waxed and waned.  Like the others, however, it has modified its layout and practices, including an emphasis on pre-ordering through its website, and masks for all.

The Whitelock Community Farm Stand operates Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at at the corner of Whitelock & Brookfield in nearby Reservoir Hill.  It pulls neighbors together and offers produce grown in part at the community garden.

State Center Farmers Market opened late but now is operating every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. into October with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, dairy products, prepared foods, crafts, and more.