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Celebrate National Farmers Market Week at a Historic Home.

August 5th, 2009 · No Comments · Destinations

Local and fresh farmers market produce.

Local and fresh farmers market produce.

The last two farmers markets I visited were surprisingly set on the grounds of historic homes.   I usually get wrapped up in the excitement of fresh, locally grown and made food, but the addition of beautiful old homes on idyllic estates plus a few people walking around dressed in 230 year old fashion, made for memorable experiences.

Coventry Regional Farmers Market, Coventry, CT

Tables in front of Hale home at Coventry market.

Tables in front of Hale home at Coventry market.

One of the largest markets in central Connecticut, this Sunday market runs 11am-2pm, June through October and sets up next to Nathan Hale’s home.  America’s first spy and Connecticut’s State Hero is most attributed to saying “I only regret that I have but one life to give my country,” at his hanging in 1776.  You can learn about the debate on what he actually said by talking to the homestead staff at the market or visiting his home.

Goat at Coventry market

Goat at Coventry market

For more information on visiting historic homes in the area, please read Midwest Guest’s “At Home with History” about their visit and review of the nearby Daniel Rust House Inn.

Hill-Stead Farmers Market, Farmington, CT

Information table at Hill-Stead market

Information table at Hill-Stead market

The Hill-Stead Museum is a National Historic Landmark that has been called the finest Colonial Revival house in the United States.  The ‘museum’ part of the  name come from the home’s  fine art collection, extensive library and broad range of artifacts from colonial life.  Don’t stay inside though.  The home sits on a hill with broad views of the Farmington River Valley and the estate is filled with kid friendly nature walks.  On Sundays from mid-July through October, a farmers market sets up in a field near the house from 11am-2pm.

Hill-Stead Farmers Market

Hill-Stead Farmers Market

Location aside, I would recommend these markets for the variety of local food available, live music, and educational programs. They are both set in fields, so be sure you bring shoes appropriate to the weather.  Both markets are very friendly for social dogs on leash with well behaved owners.

Celebrate National Farmers Markets Week by visiting a market this weekend.  A great directory of markets is found at Local Harvest, at the USDA website, or check with your state or province’s agriculture department website.

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