The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 | village@oak-park.us

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Corn Roast on tap at Farmers' Market

Aug. 6, 2018 - It is National Farmers' Market Week, and the Oak Park Farmers' Market is putting the focus on a summertime favorite to mark the occasion.

Fresh-picked corn from Market growers will be sold by the ear hot off the roaster from about 8:30 a.m. to noon this Saturday at the Oak Park Farmers' Market in the Pilgrim Church parking lot at 460 Lake St.

Patrons are encouraged to bring cash to the event as credit cards are not accepted when purchasing roasted corn, which will be sold for $2 per ear. This year the Market is using all compostable materials, so be sure to compost the cobs, wrappers and take-away bags!

The annual Corn Roast is Oak Park's way of joining markets across the country in the celebration of National Farmers' Market Week from Aug. 5-11.

As demand for local food continues to grow, so too have opportunities for America's farmers to market fresh food directly to the consumer. According to statistics recently released by the United States Department of Agriculture, farmers markets and farm stands account for roughly $2 billion of the $3 billion that Americans spend annually on farm-direct products.

This revenue, in turn, supports the livelihoods of more than 165,000 mostly small and mid-sized farms and ranches.

The Oak Park Farmers' Market began in 1976 with one farmer and has grown into today's dynamic, open-air, producer-only Market made up of 30 farmers and producers selling a wide variety of products, inluding seasonal fruits and vegetables, meat, cheese and eggs, bread, flowers and plants, honey, maple syrup and jarred items, grains and dairy products.

Making fresh produce affordable for all patrons is another hallmark of the Oak Park Farmers' Market, which has been providing SNAP/LINK card processing since 2011. In that year there was more than $4,900 in electronic benefit transfer (EBT) sales, and that total increased to more than $15,800 in EBT sales in 2017.

The Oak Park Farmers' Market also offers Matching Double Value Coupons throughout the season. For each dollar a SNAP/LINK card participant spends, they receive a $1 coupon up to a maximum of $25 in coupons per cardholder per market day.

While produce in supermarkets is often picked seven to 14 days before it becomes available to shoppers and travels an average of 1,2000 miles before reaching grocery store shelves, locally grown produce sold at farmers markets is made available at the peak of freshness and nutrient content.

The Oak Park Farmers' Market also offers food that most grocery stores don't stock such as farm-fresh duck eggs, quail eggs, turkey eggs, soy-free chicken eggs, lamb, duck, goat and heirloom tomatoes.

For this year's corn roast, the sweet corn is being donated by the following vendors: Genesis Growers, Geneva Lakes Produce, Smits "The Farm" and Nichols Farm and Orchard. Nordic Creamery is providing the summer butter.

The Oak Park Farmers' Market takes place from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. rain or shine every Saturday from opening day in mid-May through October.

For more information, visit www.oak-park.us/farmersmarket, call 708.358.5780 or email farmersmarket@oak-park.us.