Every Saturday morning, downtown Gilbert is transformed from a swanky suburban hub to a place where local vendors and community members come to reconnect. Since 2010, the Gilbert Farmers Market has grown from less than 30 vendors to over 100 booths, food trucks, and local entertainment sources.
Tucked behind the historic water tower, the market provides fresh vegetables, meats, sauces, breads, jams, drinks and handmade crafts and gifts. Whether you are nine, or 90, the market has something for everyone to enjoy. The event welcomes dogs and other small pets as long as they are on a leash and don’t disrupt other shoppers.
Andrea Phillips has been a vendor at this event for nearly four years. She sells gourmet cotton candy with help from her daughter and other family members. Phillips believes there are many benefits to the market including the relationships that form between vendors and customers. She explains, “when you buy from a person, you are getting their passion.” Phillips is glad to be part of a community where she is encouraged to share her passion with those around her.
But shopping local has more importance than just purchasing a quality good. Diego Alvarado is a Gilbert resident and has been attending this event for years. He believes that the market gives everyone a chance to discover things that they wouldn’t normally be able to find by looking at their phone. He thinks this event is a great way to invest in the community of Gilbert and enjoys eating the homemade empanadas that can be found at the market.
The Gilbert Farmers Market also provides valuable educational experiences about food and where it comes from. Community members have the opportunity to speak directly to local farmers about their produce. They also have opportunities to learn about healthy eating habits and recipe ideas from other event-goers and vendors.
Lacey Stapleton is a vendor and customer at the Gilbert Farmers Market. She believes that by participating in the market, you can support the local economy and also invest in high quality food. While she used to shop in various grocery stores, she primarily shops at the market now and says, “anything I ever wanted I could find here…meat, veggies, oil, bread, it’s all here.”
The market is open every Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon during the fall/winter season and 7-11 a.m. during the spring/summer seasons. The market is open no matter the weather, but it is closed for some holidays and city events. Organizers encourage people to check their social media pages for updates on the status of the market. For more information visit their website at gilbertmarket.com.