by Tom Walogorsky
The Pawling Farmers Market opened on Saturday, June 17, to usher in its new season. This weekly event has become a beloved town institution, showcasing businesses from Pawling, Dutchess County, the wider Hudson Valley, and beyond. Patrons came out with enthusiasm and were treated to new vendors, returning favorites, and special opening day entertainment.
Started in 2008, the market is celebrating its tenth year in the Village of Pawling. Under the direction of Terry Crowe Deegan, the event grew from humble beginnings. Originally exhibiting only a handful of participants at the end of Charles Coleman Blvd., the market has evolved to occupy the entire Village Green and boasts more than thirty regular vendors. “We’re thrilled to be celebrating our tenth year,” Ms. Deegan said.
New farm vendors include Grape Hollow Farm in Holmes, Sprout Creek Farm in Poughkeepsie, and JD Farms from Eaton, NY. All offer a variety of fresh produce and other products. Also new to the lineup were representatives from Hillrock Estates in Ancram, NY, showcasing Solera aged bourbon crafted under the direction of their resident master distiller. In addition, this season features an assembly of special artisan vendors. On the market’s opening day, Lori Adams Photography, Jeanette Rodriguez Jewelry, and Living Edge Cutting Board Designs all had representatives on hand. These exhibitions will rotate throughout the summer. A schedule is available at pawlingfarmersmarket.org.
The Farmers Market is also proud to host a number of local businesses, including the Pawling Bread Company, Growing Heart Farm, Hawk Haven Farm, and Dykeman Farm. With four generations now helping to run the business, the Dykemans have been with the Pawling Farmers Market since its inception. “It’s amazing to have watched it grow,” said Amanda Dykeman. “The board has worked so hard to get great vendors. It really becomes a community.” This sentiment was shared by Matt and Stephanie Konchan, of Chi-Cho Sauce. The hot sauce retailer is operated out of Astoria, Queens, but both Konchans were born and raised in Pawling. “We love coming back to Pawling. It’s always a great town, and they’re very supportive of us and all the local businesses,” Ms. Konchan stated.
Although produce is the cornerstone of the market, organizers also went to great lengths to secure other businesses and ensure variety. Shoppers can enjoy the selection from the Hudson Valley Winery, baked goods from Wave Hill Breads, and hot and iced coffee from The Dutchess Coffee Company in Wingdale. Dessert enthusiasts can enjoy dairy-free frozen delicacies from the New Confectioner and pies from High 5 Pies from Kent, CT. The market also features representatives from Coast to Coast Dog Treats, Pickle-licious, and even fresh-caught seafood, courtesy of American Pride Seafood.
Opening day for the market also provided entertainment to help welcome patrons to the new season. This included a performance from the Pawling High School Jazz Combo, an ensemble of six students under Director Brian Zamek. Also present on opening day was the popular Two by Two Petting Zoo. The animal display thrilled children at the market, who could interact with goats, a potbellied pig, ducks, and a Red Kangaroo. The music and animals added to the overall excitement. “This is the most fun farmers market around!” said Jay Spika of New Confectioner, a viewpoint shared by many patrons and vendors.
The Pawling Farmers Market will be open for business on the Village Green from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. every Saturday until September 30.