by Ashley Hathaway
Despite Old Man Winter delivering unseasonal chill and rain just hours before, the first-ever Glen Park Farmers’ Market offically opened at 10am Sunday May 15th in the Glen Park BART parking lot at Bosworth and Diamond Streets. Market goers quickly warmed up to the unique shopping experience a local Farmers’ Market brings, and as luck would have it, the sun came out and it fitfully felt like Springtime.
John Silveira of the Pacific Coast Farmer’s Market Association began the opening ribbon-cutting ceremony with a brief introduction to an attentive crowd. Glen Park Merchants Association President Ric Lopez was next to speak, giving thanks to the community and others who supported the project, including Silveira and Glen Park Association President Michael Rice. The GPMA spearheaded the process.
Lopez then introduced San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, and after a roaring cheer from the crowd, Lee thanked both Silveira and Lopez then said “I’m a big fan of strong neighborhoods and this makes our neighborhood really strong, and of course makes my wife happy too.” Lee’s wife Anita expressed her delight with the market saying “I love it! I like to get fresh food every day and I would go to the Alameny market – but the parking is so hard – this is right here and I can walk!”
Lee thanked Supervisor Scott Wiener and Distric Attorney George Gascon – both present for the ceremony – as well as the participating vendors and dedicated shoppers.
Wiener also spoke and emphasized how optimistic he is about Glen Park and how the Farmers Market is a part of that enthusiasm: “We are seeing a trend to getting back to the basics of what we used to know how to do fifty or a hundred years ago and then we lost touch with, and that is having great public spaces where we get out regularly and we get to know our neighbors and we have a real strong community, and farmer’s markets are a big part of that.”
He added “I think it’s also a part of a real renaissance in Glen Park – we’re going to see improvements in the canyon – improvements by the BART station – we already have a terrific branch library here, and this neighborhood is on the way up, even higher than it already is, and that’s pretty high!”
Simiular sentiments came from Glen Park residents like Rose Berryessa who said “This is bringing everyone together and I give it a thumbs up plus!”
Twenty-year Glen Park neighbor Kym Sites said she thinks it’s great and “we’re all excited about it.”
There were over 20 vendors offering everything from berries, cherries and fresh-cut flowers to hand-made goat cheese and wild local salmon. Leafy greens like dandelion and dino kale were just about as popular as the organic stawberries and white peaches.
Steve Dugan of Glen Park’s Mizpah Street said “I like the consistant high-quality of the produce here versus having to pick through more produce at the Alameny market to find the higher-quality items”.
JoHannah Adams-King of Diamond Street described the market as “marvelous” but wished her dog could have come in with her to shop. She thought at the very least a designated place for dogs should be available within the parking lot. Smoking and dogs are not allowed in the Farmer’s Market shopping area.
The Glen Park Farmers’ Market will be open on the BART parking lot Sunday’s from 10am to 2pm through October 16th, 2011. For more information on this and other local Bay Area farmer’s markets, go to http://www.pcfma.com/markets.php