Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Market Report: Soulard & Kirkwood (St. Louis)

Jen and Bill were so nice to drag themselves out of bed early Saturday morning, to take us Farmer's Marketing. They took us to not one, but two farmer's markets! Have I died and gone to heaven?

First up, the Soulard Farmer's Market.

Soulard's been around since 1779. It's more of a produce market than a local farmer's market, these days—unless there's a pineapple farm in St. Louis that I don't know about. That's ok with me, the fruits and vegetables were abundant and cheap! $2.50 for a pineapple, and 95 cents for asparagus! There were also meat markets, fish markets, and spice markets at Soulard, and I was enamored with them also. I foresee framing some of the photos from these markets, and hanging them in the new house.

There's a photo in the following slide show of a little girl "helping out" some of the street performers. She had downs syndrome, and the guy playing the banjo here just handed her the pick and let her strum, while the guys behind kept up, and sang Polly Wolly Doodle. I still have that song in my head.

Next, the Kirkwood Farmer's Market. Smaller than Soulard, but just as nice, and definitely not lacking in any produce. Meat, Alaskan salmon, goat cheese, honey, plants, and cut flowers were also available. The pictures I like here are of Mama Patrina's Spaghetti Sauce stand. Mama Patrina is 93 years old and still going strong, says her son, who was working the stand on Saturday.

While we spoke to him, customers from last week approached with one of his gallon-sized jars. A complaint: They can't get the jar open! Here he works with the customer's son, to loosen and then reseal the lid, before he bagged it back up for them, and apologized for the inconvenience.

I love our local market, but it was nice to visit the big city markets, and enjoy access to a few more choices. Soulard left me wishing that CU had a produce market—any produce market—outside of a grocery store. Remember Palmisano's, on Washington? And was it Pontious that had a produce market at Mattis & Church, years ago? It's kind of amazing to realize that we don't have anything of the sort in this berg!

Someone! Start it up! Here's your million-dollar idea!

But for tales of tarantulas in boxes of bananas, I'd do it myself.

For more photos, see my Soulard Gallery, on Smugmug.


  1. I do remember Palmisano's, but not the other place you mentioned. It might be an idea, but who could compete with Meijer?? Nice photos from St. Louis...

  2. That looks pretty cool!

  3. Well there goes my money making idea: Alligator on a stick. Too late again. Some of the people at our market sell Charleston pineapples too. I have to visit that farm some day. :)

  4. StFarmer9:03 AM

    Please tell me you were using your Nikon DSLR for those absolutely stunning shots! I need some hope that someday I'll take a decent photo.

  5. Lisa: I've been wracking my brain trying to rememebe the name of that place. It used to be where the big white building that Garcia's is in now. And I'd go to a small produce market to avoid mucking a mile through Meijer, any day.

    BuffaloDick: Road trip!

    Greg: Charleston has banana farms too, yes?

    StFarmer: Yes, most were taken with the Nikon—all of the close ups. Used the smaller point and shoot for pix of the crowds, etc. Still trying to figure out the lighting on the Nikon.

  6. I love these photos! We just went to one of those produce markets the other day and it was amazing. We bought a ton and it was all wonderful, delicious, local, and cheap! (well, comparatively.)

  7. WONDERFUL photos, as usual. NOBODY photographs markets like you do!

    And speaking of photos...that new profile photo of your is somethin' else! I LOVE it!


  8. I actually do grow Bananas in my back yard but I don't know about any farms.

  9. For some reason, the slide show took a while to load..but my patience paid off so weel! Awesome pictures Kim..such colours and shapes!

    Mama Patrina's spaghetti sauce looked yumm..you could use that for your next spaghetti partay! :-)


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