Sunday, October 16, 2011

Fresh Food at Broad and Olney

Septa's Olney Transportation Center dominates the scenery at the intersection of Broad Street and Olney Avenue and a vast array of amenities are available to those switching from bus to subway or vice versa.  A person can have a donut, go to the bank, get a burger, shop at the dollar store, or even purchase a wig; the choices are practically limitless. Now, the frequenters of the area have a healthy and fresh choice to add to their list – produce from the weekly farmers’ market. Sponsored by the Food Trust, this market is part of the Get Healthy Philly initiative launched last year by the Philadelphia Department of Health in effort to combat the city’s growing obesity problem.  

Throughout the summer and now into the fall, this market has provided area residents and commuters a cornucopia of freshly picked fruits and vegetables locally grown in Lancaster County.  This season’s bounty has included green peppers, eggplant, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, sweet corn, sweet potatoes, collard greens, kale, tomatoes, apples, peaches, plums and more. Hillside Farm, the purveyor at the market is helmed by Amish farmer John King and his family who also bring fresh baked goods to the market as well as cheese and yogurt. While the current fall season has seen the end of some of the fruit, apples are still plentiful and will be until the market ends. Most of the vegetables listed are still available and will be available until the end of the market as well.
Farmer John is pleased by the turnout for this first year market and attributes some of the market’s success to the acceptance of Snap/Food Stamps, WIC Farmers’ Market Checks, and Philly Food Bucks. Philly Food Bucks help those with ACCESS cards save money at the farmers’ market. For every 5 dollars spent at the market with the ACCESS card, you receive 2 dollars back in Philly Food Bucks for more fruits and vegetables.

If you haven’t been to this market yet, you have until Thanksgiving to give it a try. The Olney Transportation Center farmers’ market is located at Broad Street and Olney Avenue and is open every Wednesday from 2PM to 6PM until November 23rd.  What better way to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday than with some fresh nutritious fall produce? We will see you next Wednesday!  

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