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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Gear Up For The Fort Thomas Farmers' Market Opening Day

The crops are ready and Fort Thomas Farmers' Market is underway. Opening Day is this Wednesday, June 7.
The kickoff to the Fort Thomas Farmers' Market season is this Wednesday, June 7 from 3 to 7 p.m. Located at 90 Alexandria Pike in the parking lot of Fort Thomas Antiques & Design Center, the market is a family friendly event you do not want to miss.

The market will run every Wednesday, June through October, 3 to 7 p.m. (3 to 6 p.m. in October). 

Returning farmers this year include:

Diamond Ridge Farm: Diamond Ridge is back for their second year from Walton, Ky. Chris is a fourth generation farmer that is continuing the tradition of producing quality grain-fed beef and pork direct from farm to table. He also will be offering a sampling of what is growing in his garden each week.

Little Green Pastures: LGP is joining FTFM again for a second year from Butler, Ky. They raise chickens and goats in Northern Kentucky and will offer all things chicken including eggs, meat and sausages each week.

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Breezy Acres Farm: From Morning View Ky., this is Sharon and Chuck's ninth year at FTFM. They offer a lovely selection of everything from eggs, meat from their grass-fed beef and pork and pastured chickens, fruits and veggies from their garden, and always come weekly with recipes from their own kitchen.

Neltner’s Farm: From right down the road in Camp Springs, Ky. is this sixth generation farm. They continue to hold firm to the heritage that continues to yield fresh fruits and vegetables as well as Grandma Claire’s delicious jellies and jams.

Lobenstein Farm: Another FTFM staple from Brookville, Indiana, this farm joins the market in late June or early July with a beautiful selection of homegrown goodness. A favorite is their delicious melons that they bring each year, along with their welcoming hospitality.

Ryan Raised Farm: From Walton, Ky. RRF strives to produce high quality lamb, beef and poultry products for local consumers.

Pop’s Produce: The Whitford family from Cold Springs, Ky. are fourth generation farmers, selling produce in Campbell County since the '70s. They will be joining in late June or early July with a beautiful selection of corn, tomatoes and more.

Vogel Farm: This fifth generation family farm sells fresh-cut sunflowers, zinnias, pumpkins, gourds and honey. They will be joining FTFM when the sunflowers are in bloom in early July.
Put it on your summer bucket list to stop and visit their farm during the growing season where you can purchase fresh cut flowers at their honor system roadside stand at 5380 Four Mile Road in Melbourne, Ky.

New farmers for the 2017 season are:

Scott Farm: Scott Farm has been a family-owned business since 1980. It has grown substantially since then, becoming one of the largest commercial produce growers in Northern Kentucky, located near Burlington, Ky. They farm on approximately 60 acres of land and are currently represented at eight area farmers' markets.

Balanced Brilliance: Terence and Lizzie both quit their jobs in their fields, and since 2016, they have been full-time organic farmers in Morning View, Ky. They believe that living off the land is the solution to Earth’s macro problems and their own micro headaches. FTFM is happy to have them for their first season of production.

"The Ft. Thomas market is growing into one of the biggest markets in NKY," said Anna Raines of Rains & Sun Hilltop Farm.
Rains and Sun Hilltop Farm: This small, certified naturally grown family farm is in Independence, Ky. Their top-quality produce is produced sustainably and is free from chemical herbicides and pesticides and utilizes only natural sources of fertility. They grow a wide variety of crops including all types of salad and cooking greens, many varieties of tomatoes and root crops including carrots, broccoli, winter squashes and more.

Springcreek Farm: From Maysville, Ky., they offer  homegrown vegetables, salsa, jalapeno jelly, pepper rings and more.

Permaganic: This farm is a not-for-profit urban farm that serves food banks among other things.

Returning vendors this year are:
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Blue Oven Bakery: Back by popular demand, they offer a large selection of freshly made wood-fired oven breads, homemade English muffins and a variety of French pastries.

Crigger Farm: Crigger Farm is proud to be your source for all things honey. They offer pure, raw, local honey that is perfect for everything from relieving seasonal allergies to cooking your favorite recipes. They will be offering cooking demos as well as beehive education throughout the summer at the market.

Harmony Acres Farm: Amy and Linda are back and still committed to producing their top quality, unique gourmet jams and jellies as well as their outstanding spice blends.

Colonel's Creamery: Scooping up hand-crafted artisan ice cream flavors that will vary weekly, the Colonel uses local Kentucky raised fruits, berries and produce wherever possible. They are a Kentucky proud producer and a Homegrown By Heroes participant. They have won 10 national awards for exceptional quality and robust ice cream flavors.

Ridge Hill Soap Company: Back for their second year and with an even greater selection of scents of their handcrafted soaps, they also offer their products online at

Stonebrook Winery: This small family owned and operated winery is located in Camp Springs, Ky. They are dedicated to producing high quality, award-winning grape and fruit wines and have been producing unique varieties of Kentucky wine since 2005.

DIRT: DIRT is a full-time retail store owned and operated by the Corporation for Findlay Market (CFFM). The store sells locally produced goods from produce to prepared foods to soap and more. DIRT is a great fit for our market because it is able to connect local producers with consumers and provide local products that otherwise wouldn’t be available to the Fort Thomas community.

Bouchard’s Pasta: Fresh pastas, sauces and butters are created daily from recipes tracing back to Sicily with a modern twist. In the tradition of homemade Italian family dinners, each batch of pasta and sauce is made by hand, ensuring the highest quality and best tasting food is served on your table.  Bouchard's also offers baked goods that vary with the season.

New 2017 vendors include:

Fork and Pie: A licensed “from scratch” bakery that handcrafts baked goods using fresh, high quality ingredients. Everything is prepared in small batches to keep each recipe personal and true.

A Mother’s Touch Cakes: They will be selling at the FTFM on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month. They are a local, licensed bakery established in 2010 that offers gourmet treats baked from scratch using all natural ingredients, including local when possible. They specialize in alternative items such as gluten free, vegan, all natural energy bars and organic coffee. Also, 10% of their sales goes towards their quarterly outreach.

"We love the energy of this market," said Andrea Holtz of June and Joann's Market Stand
June and Joann's Market Stand: Paying homage to their favorite garden girls, Grandma June and her dear sister Joann, their market stand is full of love and blessings just like theirs was years ago.  Seedling sisters supplying fresh-from-their-garden blooming bouquets, succulents, air plants and other potted pleasures. They also feature locally sourced seasonal bakes and cupcakes from Home Grown Cakes.

Lil’s Bagels: Lil's Bagels are bagels that come in a variety of homemade flavors. They hand roll, boil, and bake each bagel with tradition and CHUTZPAH.

Simple Cultures: Marta and Tom Vennemann, owners and operators are Fort Thomas residents who make lacto-fermented, cultured vegetables like sauerkraut, kimchi, spicy pickles, caulisprouts and soon-to-come beetnips. They never add sugar, vinegar or heat, and all of their products are 100% vegan and naturally gluten free. Their products promote healthy digestion and boost the immune system.

"We are so excited about joining Ft.Thomas Farmers' Market this year. Being a new small business, it's a great opportunity to meet new people, network with local farmers and grow our business. We are grateful to be part of this community," said Marta Vennemann

Market Day Sundries: This vendor will offer both homemade pottery from J. Tobler Pottery and organic eggs and produce from Orchard Park Urban Farm Project.

In addition to the farmers and vendors, this Wednesday, opening day will feature Maxwell Jump with a bouncy house for the kids; Summit Hill Martial Arts with board breaking and prize wheel; Fort Thomas Rocks, featuring rock painting; the Campbell County Extension Office with raw veggie samplings and a cooking demo with Ronda Rex; Barre 3 will have a "Mommy & Me" class from 3:30 to 4 p.m.and a canvas bag hand-out; and Grace Fellowship Church will be handing out free ice cold water.

The day's music will be provided by Jerome Calia from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., and the following food trucks will be there: La Orangettte, Kona Ice, Pretzelfuls, Live Healthy, Cheese n' Chong and Highlander Grill.

The opening day theme on Wednesday, June 7 will be followed by June 14th's Father's Day Week.

"I believe this is going to be a great market and unique to the area especially with all the kids' programs, lineup of vendors and producers, etc., said Farmers' Market Committee Member Nancy Meyers.

We rival some of the larger, well-known markets such as Sunday Hyde Park Market. We might not be the destination that a Findlay Market is, however, I believe this market is a phenomenal representation of the Fort Thomas community."

For weekly updates and schedules, visit Fort Thomas Farmers' Market on Facebook.