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Lathrup Village to open farmers market May 11

By: Jennie Miller | Southfield Sun | Published April 14, 2011

 Flowers and tomatoes were on sale at the Southfield Farmers Market in 2010.

Flowers and tomatoes were on sale at the Southfield Farmers Market in 2010.

File photo by Deb Jacques

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LATHRUP VILLAGE — Jumping on the buy-local bandwagon, Lathrup Village will offer a farmers market 1-6 p.m. on Wednesdays, beginning May 11 and running through mid-October, outside City Hall.

The market is the brainchild of Lathrup Village Mayor Frank Brock, who grew up on a farm and helped start the Southfield Farmers Market when he headed up the Cornerstone Development Authority.

“It’s something close to my heritage,” Brock explained. “We lived like kings when it came to food — we raised a lot of it. Everything was fresh. My mother did a lot of canning that would carry you through the winter months. I’ve always been a fan of this locally grown food, knowing where it comes from, and that’s the nice thing about these farmers markets — the guys selling it are the guys who are growing it. So, not only do you have the experience of getting some nice, fresh produce, and take it home and feed your family good, fresh, high-quality produce, you also get the chance to get to know the people who’ve put their lives to bringing it to you.”

Lathrup Village Recreation Coordinator Maralee Rosemond has been hard at work putting the market together, enlisting Hilltop Greenhouse and Farms in Ann Arbor, Penzien Farm and Greenhouses in Imlay City, Gracias Greenhouse in Belleville and Oakland Wildflower Farm in Ortonville as its anchors for produce and plants. Other local vendors include Vic the Bread Man; Sansonetti Sauces in Holly, which is bringing items like marinara sauce and Michigan maple barbecue sauce; Tabone Orchards and Vineyards in Traverse City and Petosky, which is bringing cherry vinegars and marinades, granola and dried fruits; and Ross Farms, which is bringing jams and jellies.

“Everything is Michigan-based, and they have to have a part in the process of making that product,” Rosemond said of the criteria for market vendors. “We’re going to be doing our very best that none of these items come from any other state — in fact, it’s in our application that they cannot buy and sell. … We want to be supportive of the farms and small businesses and people who deal with Michigan products. It’s tough right now. And we want to show our appreciation for that.”

The market will be located right outside Lathrup Village City Hall, 27400 Southfield Road.

“I’ve always felt that with the city’s City Hall location right there on Southfield Road, with all the traffic and population around there, it would be a great spot to put a farmers market,” Brock said. “We’ve had a great response from a lot of farmers, and we’re tickled with the response we’re getting.”

The Lathrup Village Downtown Development Authority is providing the seed money to get the market going.

“It’s good for our businesses around there — people may stop in the city who may not have stopped before,” Brock said.

For more information, call (248) 557-3600 or visit www.lathrupvillage.org.

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