With the warmer weather of spring comes the arrival of fresh local produce and seasonal outdoor markets. Three weekly seasonal markets open for the summer months in Bethlehem this week.
The Historic District Bethlehem Farmers Market makes its debut this morning at 11 a.m. in the Sun Inn Courtyard downtown. Mayor John Callahan is expected to say a few words at an official opening ceremony at 11:30 a.m.
The market will reopen every Tuesday at 11 a.m. and feature at least a dozen local food producers selling their products.
Among the vendors participating during the first week of the market will be Bethlehem favorites Jumbars, selling sandwiches and other items, and the Back Door Bakeshop. Of course, there will also be fresh produce from a number of area farms.
The SteelStacks Farmers Market, which debuted a year ago, returns at 3 p.m. Thursday in a slightly new location and with a new sponsor.
The market has been moved from PNC Plaza, west of the blast furnaces, to the Air Products Town Square, the area immediately adjacent to the ArtsQuest Center and PBS 39’s new headquarters. The market will be open every Thursday from 3 to 7 p.m.
St. Luke’s University Hospital is lending its name to the weekly market as it helps to present a series of educational programs at the market aimed at teaching the community about healthy lifestyles. Cooking demonstrations and gardening classes will be among the programs offered.
Also new this year will be weekly children’s activities, including a variety of fun crafts and regular visits by the Bethlehem Area Public Library bookmobile.
Among the items for sale at the market: locally grown fruits and vegetables; grass-fed beef and cheeses; delicious smoked meats; artisan breads and homemade desserts; gourmet coffee; vegan prepared foods and desserts; and more. In addition, beautiful functional pottery, homemade soaps, alpaca wool products, estate grown and produced wines, and more will be available.
All fruits, vegetables and foods are grown, raised and produced locally, with the market a proud member of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter of “Buy Fresh Buy Local.”
Finally, the Bethlehem Farmers Market at Campus Square is the longest running farmers market in the city, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year at S. New and E. Morton streets on the northern edge of Lehigh University’s campus.
The market will be open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Thursday until late October.
This year’s market will be expanded, having 18 vendors, selling a variety of locally made products including farm fresh eggs, flowers, salsa, ready-made lunches and locally grown fruits and vegetables.