Celebrate National Farmers Market Week In Belmont Thursday

Photo: A special week at the Farmers Market.

It’s National Farmers’ Market Week, August 4-10.

Farmers’ markets stimulate local economies, increase access to fresh, healthy food, and promote sustainable farming practices. They reconnect residents to the bounty of their region, sharing knowledge about seasonality and the variety of local goods. 

Stop by to celebrate and support the local farmers and food entrepreneurs that are helping to make our community a better place. There will be fun activities for the family – a scavenger hunt, photo booth, prizes and more.

Expected vendors this week:

Produce: Dick’s Market Garden, Common Acre Farm, Hutchins Farm, C&M Farm, Flats Mentor Farm, Nicewicz Family Farm

Meat, fish and dairy: Hooked – Red’s Best & Boston Smoked Fish Co., Foxboro Cheese Co., Lilac Hedge Farm, The Little White Goat Dairy

Bread, pastry and sweets: Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery

Prepared foods: Del Sur Empanadas, Valicenti Pasta Farm, Keegan Kreations, This Haiti

And more: When Life Gives You Lemons, Recreo Coffee & Roasterie, Beverly Bees, Merton’s Maple Syrup

At the Events Tent

2 p.m.: Lindsay Straw
Traditional ballads have been a source of inspiration for guitarist, singer and Irish bouzouki player Lindsay Straw since her childhood in Montana. But she truly grew into the art when she became immersed in Boston’s Irish and folk music scenes. Once here, she began to tie together the threads of the traditions she was most passionate about: English, Scottish, Irish and American folk songs from the 60’s, 70’s and beyond.

2 p.m.: Face Painting with Nina White
Nina is a rising senior at Belmont High School. She is applying to art schools and hopes to be a professional artist in the future. She is very popular with kids and adults alike.

4 p.m.: Storytime
Belmont Public Library staff read to young kids at the Market each week.

4:30 p.m.: Ruth Rappaport and Friends
Ruth will return to the market this Thursday to play mountain ballads, blues, honky-tonk hits and old folk tunes. Ruth will be joined by Alan Kaufman on the fiddle and Gian Criscitiello on bass.

At the Community Table

2 p.m.: Pop Up Library
The Belmont Public Library will be ready to lend you some books, answer questions, and give recommendations.

Shoppers are reminded that the Market matches SNAP (formerly Food Stamps) dollars up to $20 per person per Market day and most produce vendors support the HIP program which provides free produce to SNAP recipients.

Belmont Farmers Market Opens Thursday, June 6, At 2 PM

Photo: Ribbon cutting Thursday at 2 p.m.

Roy Epstein, Belmont’s newest member of the Select Board, will join Miss Tomato on Thursday, June 6 at 2 p.m. for the ceremonial ribbon cutting, bell ringing and a trumpet fanfare, to celebrate the opening of the 14th season of the Belmont Farmers Market.

Not only will residents and visitors have great local produce, baked goods, dairy, meat and fish, and prepared foods to purchase like all farmers’ markets have, but the Belmont Farmers Market is more.

,There will be storytime, performances for kids and grownups, community information, chats with friends and neighbors, and much more.


  • Produce: C & M Farm*, Common Acre Farm*, Dick’s Market Garden, Hutchins Farm
  • Meat, fish & dairy: Hooked (Red’s Best & Boston Smoked Fish Co), Foxboro Cheese Co., Lilac Hedge Farm*
  • Bread, pastry & sweets: Dulce D Leche, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Mariposa Bakery*, Tick Tock Chocolates*
  • Prepared foods: Del Sur Natural Empanadas, Deano’s Pasta, Just Hummus*, Tex Mex Eats
  • And more: Beverly Bees,*, When Life Gives You Lemons.
  • Indicates a new vendor in 2019. Find out more about all of our vendors.


The market match government benefits to help all families take home great, local food: SNAP (Food Stamps), WIC (for moms & babies) and FMNP (for seniors). Most of our produce vendors accept HIP.

  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Music by The Soundchasers
  • 4 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Storytime for kids and grownups. Reading by our friends at the Belmont Public Library
  • 5 p.m. – 6 p.m.: Music by LBE Brass


  • 2 p.m. – 3 p.m.: Talk with Mary Beth Calnan, Belmont’s Recycling Coordinator. She can answer questions about Belmont’s plastic bag ban, and about trash, recycling and yard waste pickup.
  • Kim Foster of Community Growing: Plant a seed with your kids to take home while learning about gardening and Belmont Food Collaborative’s Community Growing program.

You Can Ring My Bell: Belmont Farmers Market’s Opening Day Thursday, June 7

Photo: The Farmers Market is back for another season.

The Market Day bell will be heard throughout Belmont Center as the Belmont Farmers Market returns for another season on Thursday, June 7 in the Claflin Street Municipal Parking lot. Opening Day events include:

• 1:55 p.m.: Fanfare by Dave Douglas of the Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra.
• 2 p.m.: Ribbon-cutting by Patrice Garvin, Belmont’s Town Administrator and the ringing of the Market bell.
• 3:10 p.m.: Fred Astaire Dance Studio demonstration.
• 4:30 p.m. Irish and Anglo-American folk songs with Lindsay Straw.

Here is a list of this season’s vendors.


• 4 p.m.: The Belmont Public Library returns with stories for kids and parents.

Community Table

The Popup library sponsored by the Belmont Public Library. Browse and check out a variety of books.

Belmont Food Pantry

Bring non-perishable items to support the Belmont Food Pantry. Drop them off at the Manager’s Tent.

Location: The municipal parking lot in Belmont Center, at the intersection of Cross Street and Channing Road, behind the now-closed Foodie’s Market on Leonard Street. Get directions at Google Maps.

Getting there The Market is near the MBTA commuter train and the 74 bus stops in Belmont Center. The market also has bicycle parking. Also, observe parking regulations on the street and in the lot.

Dates:  Thursdays, June 7 through October 25.

Hours:  Our hours change after Labor Day because the sun sets earlier:
2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. from June through Labor Day

2 p.m. to 6 p.m. after Labor Day until the end of October

Weather: The market is open rain or shine (but not in violent storms). Events and Storytime may be canceled even if the Market is open; check with the Library on very hot or stormy weather.

Belmont Farmers Market Ready To Park Itself In Belmont Center For 13th Season

Photo: Hal Shubin (left) and Suzanne Johannet of the Belmont Food Collaborative before the Belmont Board of Selectmen.

What a difference two weeks can make.

The last time the leadership of the Belmont Food Collaborative – the group that runs the Belmont Farmers Market – was before the Board of Selectmen on Jan. 22, it was a slightly frosty reception as it comes to secure the board’s OK to bring the market back to Belmont Center for a 13th season.

Suzanne Johannet, collaborative’s president, and Hal Shubin, the chairman of the farmers market, were seated next to Kevin Foley, manager of Locatelli Properties and landlord of many businesses along Leonard Street in Belmont Center. For the second year, Foley came to the board to bring up a continuing sore point of the Farmers Market taking nearly 20 parking spaces in the rear of the Claflin Street Municipal Parking Lot on what he describes as “one of our busiest days of the week.” 

“Before we talk where and when the Farmers Market is located, that we look at this issue carefully each year and look at parking demand and adjust accordingly,” said Foley at the January meeting. In the past, Foley suggested either moving the market to another location away from the center or changing the markets’ operation times and the day it takes place such as Monday, noting that several new businesses have opened in the center with a new restaurant scheduled to arrive this summer.

For the Collaborative, Foley’s continued criticism of the markets’ use of the public lot was baffling. “What do you want, Kevin?” said Johannet, saying that Market customers bring business to his tenants, specifically during the summer when business drags.  

While open to the market returning for its second decade at the site, the Selectmen were “frustrated,” according to member Mark Paolillo, that long-standing agreement for the collaborative and Locatelli to sit down at a meeting “discuss” the parking issue had not taken place for well over a year. Due to the dispute, the Selectmen delayed acting on granting the Collaborative the right to set up shop in the parking lot “until you get together as was promised,” said Paolillo.

Fast forward to Monday, Feb. 5 and the much warmer encounter between the board and collaborative. 

Working with new Town Administrator Patrice Garvin, the Collaborative met with Foley and representatives from the Belmont Center Business Association and as Johannet told the board, it appears the Farmers Market was a lesser concern to Foley than the overriding worry of providing an adequate number of “core parking spaces” for patrons of the center’s retail operators. 

Johannet said Foley had been using the market “as a football” to express his frustrations with the town over the broader issue of parking supply and demand.

Garvin said Foley would like the town to create some “reprieve” for the employees to take pressure off of shoppers and those eating at the center’s restaurants. In an effort to help the business community, the town and market will continue to monitor parking levels and hold ongoing discussions with all sides, said Garvin. 

Despite Foley’s protestations, the Selectmen were solidly in the market’s corner. “The town owns the parking lot, not Kevin Foley,” said Selectmen Chair Jim Williams. In the end, the board voted unanimously to allow the Belmont Farmers Market to use the 19 spaces each Thursday, 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. (6 p.m. in September and October) from June 7 to Oct. 26 to bring fresh produce and locally made goods to residents, to the applause of supporters in the audience.

According to Shubin, the collaborative is reviewing options that would allow the market to avoid being caught between the parking needs of businesses and the town, which could include asking for a multi-year approval.

“We can now get excited about our 13th year,” said Johannet.

Last Of The Summer Harvest At The Belmont Farmers Market

Photo: Belmont Farmers Market.
Apples are king at the Belmont Farmers Market; two months into its harvest and the variety continues to grow, while blueberries and peaches are just about done for the year. But if you need a little bit of summer for your kitchen, tomatoes, cucumbers, and corn continues to be available. 
This is the last week of summer hours – 2 p.m. to 6;30 p.m. – at the market. Starting in September, market days will close at 6 p.m. each Thursday to account for the earlier sunsets.
The Belmont Farmer Market is located in the Claflin Street municipal parking lot at the corner of Cross and Channing behind Belmont Center. 
Weekly Vendors
Red’s Best, Stillman Quality Meats, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Dick’s Market Garden, Del Sur Empanadas, Goodies Homemade, Bread Obsession, Hutchins Farm, Freedom Food Farm, Foxboro Cheese Co., Flats Mentor Farm, Nicewicz Family Farm, Brookford Farm
Monthly and Occasional Vendors
Bittersweet Herb Farm, Minuteman Kettle Corn, Pet Wants, Recreo Coffee and Roaster, swissbäkers, Valicenti Pasta Farm. Learn more about our vendors on our website.
Community Table
Green Team: sharing tips for reducing food waste in cafeterias.
Schedule of Events
2 p.m.: Music by Joe Zarro, the coolest pastor in Belmont.
4 p.m.: Story time with the children librarians from the Belmont Public Library. 
4:30 p.m.: Music Together is an internationally recognized program “for children from birth through age seven-and the grownups who love them.” Lenka Zbruz, who directs the Belmont group, says she loves “making music more than anything else.”

Tomatoes, Honey and Yoga At Today’s Farmers Market

Photo: Peaches are in season.
Late August is the perfect time of year at the Belmont Farmers Market open today, Thursday, Aug. 24 from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the Claflin Street Municipal parking lot behind Belmont Center. 
Summer produce is very much in season, with an amazing selection of tomatoes, peppers, corn, summer squash, and peaches, and fall produce is just starting to come in. It’s also time to stock up on honey, as this is Tewksbury Honey’s final week at the Market for this year.
Weekly Vendors
Red’s Best, Stillman Quality Meats, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Dick’s Market Garden, Del Sur Empanadas, Goodies Homemade, Bread Obsession, Hutchins Farm, Freedom Food Farm, Foxboro Cheese Co., Flats Mentor Farm, Nicewicz Family Farm, Tewksbury Honey (final week), Brookford Farm
Monthly and Occasional Vendors
Deano’s Pasta, Jaju Pierogi, Japonaise Bakery, Recreo Coffee and Roastery, The Warren Farm and Sugarhouse
Community Table
Boston Area Gleaners
Schedule of Events
2 p.m.: Acoustic Breezes – a progressive, guitar-driven band that fuse jazz, folk, rock, and world rhythms with strong, expressive vocals to create a wealth of unique “free-verse” songs.
4 p.m.: Storytime with the librarians from the Children’s Room of the Belmont Public Library.
4:30 p.m.; Artemis Yoga – The Coolidge Square studio will teach a posture exercise to align the body in an optimal standing position and host a plank challenge.

Letter to the Editor: Farmers Market Could Use Your Help

Photo: The Farmers Market
The Belmont Farmers’ Market and its parent organization, the Belmont Food Collaborative (BFC), have a food assistance program to help people in need. A big part of that is matching SNAP benefits at the Market (formerly called food stamps).

Each week, we match up to $25 of the amount that a SNAP shopper spends. For example, we’ll debit $20 from a shopper’s account and give $40 to spend on eligible products at the Market. This has been a very popular program, helping many households enjoy healthy, local products – we’ve matched over $12,000 since we started in 2011. 

SNAP matching has grown dramatically this year. So far, we’ve spent twice as much as we budgeted. To continue the program, we have been asking our supporters to help fund our food assistance programs with a donation at the BFC website. They’ve been very generous, allowing us to continue providing this important assistance.
This year, the Commonwealth began a new program called Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) for SNAP recipients. When SNAP shoppers buy fruits and vegetables from a participating vendor, the amount is immediately refunded to their account. (There is a monthly maximum, based on household size.) HIP only applies to fruits and vegetables, while SNAP applies to that, plus most of the rest of the products at the Market, such as meat, pasta, eggs, cheese, cookies, bread and more.
As one of our shoppers said recently, “Wow! That’s great.” And it is! These programs are a great way to help people eat fresh, local foods and support local agriculture at the same time.
Because HIP is new and SNAP has grown in popularity, we’ve written a brief handout to explain how they work at our Market. Volunteers have helped by translating it into Chinese and Russian, and we expect to have an Armenian version soon. Download the SNAP/HIP handouts on our website.
Shoppers get SNAP certificates at our Market Manager tent. For the HIP benefit, they can go right to a participating produce vendor. So far, Hutchins Farm is our only HIP vendor, but we expect that the others will be getting their card-swipe terminals from the Commonwealth very soon.
Many farmers’ markets match SNAP, but not all do. Boston no longer matches SNAP benefits; they’re encouraging shoppers to use HIP instead. We match state benefits and encourage our vendors to participate in HIP because food assistance is a big part of the mission of the Market’s parent organization, the Belmont Food Collaborative.
Our matching program also includes WIC and Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FNMP) certificates. Another part of the BFC’s food assistance program is growing produce to donate to the Belmont Food Pantry (volunteers can help by watering and weeding).
Stop at the Manager’s tent for SNAP coupons, full details and answers to your questions. See you at the Market!
Hal Shubin
Chairperson of the Market Committee,
Belmont Food Collaborative, a 501(c)(3) organization, and the parent organization of the Belmont Farmers’ Market.

Market Day: Early Harvests Coming In; Donations Needed To Help Assistance Program

From the fresh greens of June to the colorful produce of July, the harvests are rushing into each other on Market Day in Belmont today.
Come to the Belmont Farmers Market to enjoy the early summer bounty. Strawberries and raspberries are coming in as are eggplant, broccoli and peppers.
The market – open from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. – is located in the Claflin Street municipal parking lot at the corner of Cross and Channing behind Belmont Center. 
Learn about the markets’ vendors on its website.
Weekly Vendors:
Red’s Best, Stillman Quality Meats, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Dick’s Market Garden, Del Sur Empanadas, Goodies Homemade, Bread Obsession, Hutchins Farm, Freedom Food Farm, Foxboro Cheese Co., Brookford Farm
Monthly and Occasional Vendors:
Minuteman Kettle Corn, Bittersweet Herb Farm, Valicenti Pasta Farm, Garbage to Garden, swissbäkers, Tewksbury Honey.

The Belmont Food Collaborative which runs the weekly Farmers Market is also making an

appeal for food assistance donations. The Market helps shoppers on limited budgets purchase fresh, local food. It matchs up to $25 of SNAP benefits (formerly called food stamps) and match WIC and Senior FMNP coupons as well. 
This market season, demand for SNAP matches has nearly tripled. Please make a tax-deductible donation to fund the Market match so we can continue to help our neighbors in need. You can do so at the market or online.
Also at the market today: 
Community Table
4 p.m.: Selectman Adam Dash will be holding office hours from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Schedule of Events
2 p.m.: Music by traditional folk singer, guitarist, and Irish bouzouki player Lindsay Straw
4 p.m.: Storytime with the librarians from the Belmont Public Library’s Childrens’ room.
4:30 p.m.: Music by jazz guitarist and vocalist Sarah Fard.

Market Day in Belmont Could Include Strawberries, Chenery Musicians on Hand

Photo: Will we find strawberries on Market Day in Belmont.

It’s market day in Belmont and there’s a good chance there will be strawberries for sale. If they are or not, There will be more than 90 minutes of great music by musicians from the Chenery Middle School.

The Belmont Light Department will be answering questions and giving out merchandise at our Community Table and we’ll have performances from Aleisha and the Chenery 7th and 8th music ensembles. As always, come join Storytime for the little ones at 4 p.m.

Belmont’s Farmers Market – open from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. – is located in the Belmont Center Municipal Parking lot behind Leonard Street at the intersection of Cross Street at Channing Road.

Weekly vendors: Bread Obsession*, Brookford Farm*, Del Sur Empandas*, Dick’s Market Garden, El Recreo Coffee*, Foxboro Cheese Co., Goodies Homemade, Hutchins Farm, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Red’s Best, Stillman Quality Meats, Underwood Greenhouses

Occasional vendors here this week: Deano’s Pasta*, El Recreo Coffee*, Gluten Free Me*, Halvah Heaven*, Japonaise Bakery*, Rain barrels (Sustainable Belmont), The Warren Farm and Sugarhouse, Underwood Greenhouses.

* indicates new vendors

In the Events Tent

  • 2 p.m.: The duo “Aleisha.”
  • 4 p.m.: Stories for children about farms, farmers’ markets & home gardens (sample titles) from the librarians from the Belmont Public Library’s Children’s Room.
  • 4:30 p.m.: The 8th-grade chamber orchestra and 8th-grade small wind ensemble from the Chenery Middle School.
  • 5:30 p.m.: The 7th and 8th-grade jazz combos.

Belmont Farmers Market Opens for Season Thursday @ 2 PM

Photo: Open for the season!

The Belmont Farmers Market will open for the 2017 season today, Thursday, May 8 at 2 p.m. its traditional fanfare, ringing of the market bell and a ribbon cutting at its home in the rear of the Claflin Street Municipal Parking Lot just off Belmont Center.
The market, run by the Belmont Food Collabrative, will hold a tasting by the recently opened Foodie’s Markets, there will be a Storytime event, and a musical performance featuring saxaphones.
The weekly vendors at the market include:
Bread Obsession (new), Brookford Farm (new), Del Sur Empanadas (new), Dick’s Market Garden Farm, Goodies Homemade, Foxboro Cheese Co., Hutchins Farm, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Red’s Best Fish/Boston Smoked Fish Co. (new), and Stillman Quality Meats.

The occasional vendors this year include:
Bittersweet Herb Farm (new), Garbage to Garden (new), Indonesian Three Magnolias (new), Minuteman Kettle Corn (new), Recreo Coffee & Roasterie (new), Sustainable Belmont Rain Barrels, swissbäkers (new), and Valicenti Pasta Farm.
Learn about our vendors on the market’s website.
Schedule of Events today include:
  • 1:55 p.m.: Fanfare by Nathaniel Meyer & Ribbon Cutting by the Belmont Board of Selectmen
  • 2:15 p.m.: Tasting by Foodie’s Markets
  • 4 p.m.: Storytime with librarians from the Belmont Public Library
  • 4:30 p.m.: Music by Eight Thumbs Saxophone Quartet