The first Summer Street Stroll Farmers Market in Barton County’s courthouse square opened Thursday, with a variety of fresh foods and homemade arts and crafts for sale. The market will be open every Thursday this summer from 4-7 p.m.
Products included radishes, rhubarb and other veggies, as well as ground beef, eggs and honey.
Sisters Tiffany Ford and Melissa Ford from rural Great Bend offered goat milk items such as lotions, bath “fizzies” and designer soaps from their business, Ford Twin Ranch.
There was no fresh goat milk for sale, but Tiffany said she and Melissa – who really is her twin sister – do sell milk at their ranch, located south of Great Bend at 155 SE 1 Ave. That was formerly the site of the Healing Hearts Ranch, a ministry that offered equine-assisted therapy. The Fords now run it as an educational ranch where they share God’s creation, Melissa said.
Their Facebook page describes it as a Christ-based ranch, dairy and soap maker.
“We have friends who are lactose intolerant who can drink goat milk,” Tiffany said.
At the table next to theirs, Naomi Johnson was selling artisan bread she had baked that day.
Farmers markets make healthier, locally-grown food easier to access for everyone, said Katelyn Sigler with the Barton County Health Department. The department oversees the Kansas Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program for this area, which provides coupons that low-income senior citizens can use to purchase some items.
Along with the items for sale, there will be special events on Thursday evenings, such as the City Band concerts that start June 1.
Next weekend will be pretty exciting too, with June Jaunt starting on Friday.