Steve Hess of Lowe Creek Farm is a longtime vendor at the Gray Street Farmers Market | Photo by Darla Carter

It’s that time of year when locals flock to farmers markets.

Steve Hess of Lowe Creek Farm in Middletown has a theory why.

“It’s the freshness and the taste and the history,” said Hess, who was selling carrots, duck eggs and other goodies at the Gray Street Farmers Market in downtown Louisville.

You may find that your produce from a farmers market has a better texture because it hasn’t traveled very long, Hess said.

“I can give you a peach that’s ready to eat when it comes in and it’s in full sweetness,” he said. “The other peaches you buy in a grocery store year-round, any season you want … they’ll always be hard and not very sweet. But, boy, they last forever.”

Hess was manning a booth on the opening day of the Gray Street Farmers Market, where he’s a longtime vendor. The market is a joint effort between the University of Louisville School of Public Health and Information Science and the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health & Wellness.

Fourth Street Live has a new farmers market | Photo by Olivia Krauth

The farmers market is a three-minute drive from Fourth Street Live, which recently started hosting a farmers market on Wednesdays, to improve food access from downtown to west Louisville.

“Farmers markets are a great way to bring fresh, locally grown produce to our neighborhoods, especially to those neighborhoods that don’t have easy access to healthy foods,” Dr. Sarah Moyer, director of Public Health and Wellness, noted in an email. “The CDC recommends that we eat five fruits and vegetables each day to maintain a healthy diet. Farmers markets can help to fill that gap.”

A crowdfunding campaign, with a goal of raising $3,950, has been started to help continue and expand Gray Street’s Dollar For Dollar program, which benefits customers who use SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

“In 2017, our Dollar for Dollar program doubled the spending power of 60 SNAP households, giving them a total of $2,200 to spend at the market,” Melissa Schreck, the school’s director of external affairs, said in a news release. “However, the need is much greater than the funds we have available.”

Donations to the crowdfunding campaign will be taken for a limited time at https://elevate.louisville.edu/GSFM

Georgia’s Sweet Potato Pie Co. on the opening day of the Gray Street Farmers Market | Photo by Darla Carter.

Although many people go to farmers markets for fresh produce, there often are other products to be had, depending on which one you frequent. Gray Street’s vendors, include Bonnet Bandits, which sells head coverings, shower caps and pillowcases, and the sweet treats of Georgia’s Sweet Potato Pie Co.

“We had a great turnout; a great crowd,” said Demetri Urrutia of Georgia’s, which sells everything from whole pies to sweet potato cupcakes and muffins. “Everybody’s loving our product, so far, so I can’t wait to come back next week.”

Farmers Markets

Looking for a place to shop? Here is a partial list of farmers markets in the Louisville area. SNAP stands for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and SFMNP stands for the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program.

Gray Street Farmers Market | Photo by Darla Carter

Beechmont Open Air Farmers Market

Located at the Beechmont Baptist Church parking lot

4574 South Third Street

June 9-Sept. 29

Saturdays: 8 a.m.-12 p.m.

Cash, credit/debit cards, SNAP, SFMNP

Belknap Farmers Market

Usually located outside the Red Barn

Address: 2011 S Brook St (Rain location: Swain Student Activities Center, 2100 S. Floyd St.)

Aug. 15-Oct. 24 (Spring season has finished.)

Wednesdays: 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Cash, Credit/debit cards

Crescent Hill UMC Farmer’s Market

Located at corner of Frankfort Ave and S. Peterson in the Crescent Hill United Methodist Church parking lot.

Address: 201 S. Peterson Ave.

March 21 through Oct. 18

Wednesdays, 2-6 p.m. (except July 4)

Cash. Credit/debit cards (some vendors)

Courtesy of St. Matthews Farmers Market

Douglass Loop Farmers Market

Located in the loop at Douglass Blvd Christian Church

2005 Douglass Blvd

March 3-Dec. 15

Saturdays: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Cash, credit/debit cards, SFMNP

Fourth Street Live Farmers Market

Located: Between Liberty Street and Muhammad Ali Blvd.

Address: 411 S. Fourth St.

May 9-Oct. 31

Wednesdays: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cash, Credit/debit cards, SNAP

Gray Street Farmers Market

Located in the 400 block of East Gray Street, between South Preston and South Jackson streets

400 East Gray St.

May 17-Oct. 25

Thursdays: 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

Cash, credit/debit cards, SNAP, SFMNP

Louismill Anchorage Farmers Market

Located on LaGrange Road in the Anchorage area

12102 LaGrange Road

Through Oct. 26

Saturdays: 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

Cash, credit

Lyndon Farmers’ Market

Located on grass at the edge of a parking lot

7515 Westport Road

May 11-Oct. 26

Fridays: 3-6 p.m.

Takes cash. Credit/debit (most vendors)

The Middletown Market

Located in the Historic District (Parking with First Baptist Church)

11721 Main Street

May 9-Oct. 24

Wednesdays: 3-6 p.m.

Cash, credit cards

Phoenix Hill NuLu Farmers’ Market

Located in the parking lot of Fresh Start Growers’ Supply

1007 East Jefferson Street

May 22-end of October.

Tuesdays: 3-6 p.m.

Cash, credit/debit cards, SNAP, SFMNP

Gray Street Farmers Market | Photo by Darla Carter

Rainbow Blossom Farmers Market

Located in the parking lot of Rainbow Blossom Market

3738 Lexington Road

May to October

Sundays: 12-4 p.m.

Cash, credit/debit, SNAP

St. Andrew Farmers’ Market

Located at the St. Andrew United Church of Christ

2608 Browns Lane

June 7 to probably end of September

Thursdays: 3-6:30 p.m.

Cash, credit/debit, SNAP

St. Matthews Farmers Market

Located at the Beargrass Christian Church Campus/Parking lot

4100 Shelbyville Road

May 12-Sept 29

Saturdays: 8 a.m. — 12 p.m.

Cash. Credit/debit (some vendors) 

Do you have a farmers market in Louisville that you’d like to have added to this list? Write to us at [email protected]

This listing has been updated.

Darla Carter is a hometown girl who recently joined the staff of Insider Louisville to mostly cover health. She previously served as a longtime health and fitness writer for The Courier-Journal, where she also worked for the Metro, Neighborhoods and Features departments. Prior to that, the award-winning journalist wrote for newspapers elsewhere in Kentucky and Tennessee, covering a range of topics, from education to courts. She's a graduate of Western Kentucky University, where she studied journalism and philosophy, and is the proud mom of two young children.


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