Sunday, January 31, 2016

Gilbert Farmers Market, a place where a dog can bring their best friend to shop organic

By: Ron Valderrama/Tragically Hip Living

Gilbert Water Tower
Photo: Tragically Hip Living
Farmers markets have gained in popularity across the country, and the same is true here in sunny Arizona. Gilbert, Arizona is part of the Greater Phoenix Area, what was once a sleepy farm and ranch town is now dotted with subdivisions and strip centers. The original downtown area  of Gilbert has managed to preserve the past of the historic downtown and remains the focal point of the community.

Although Gilbert has grown in size, the small town atmosphere still remains.

Photo: Tragically Hip Living
Whether a local, or just visiting Arizona, the Gilbert Farmers Market (GFM) is a must see for places to visit. The Gilbert Farmers Market is open every Saturday year-round, rain or shine, and is located at the Gilbert Park and Ride in downtown, just keep an eye out for the iconic water tower and follow the crowds. But the GFM isn't just for humans, dogs are welcome as well, and although the scent from the food trucks must be absolute torture for the rapid waggin' tailed creatures, a chance to hang out with other canines and sniff a butt or two has to be like Disneyland in their eyes.

Gilbert Farmers Market
Photo: Tragically Hip Living
Opened since 2010, the Gilbert Farmers Market has grown from it's early days of less than 30 vendors. Today, they have 60 vendors in the summer months, and close to 100 in the summer months. The GFM prides itself on featuring local, chemical free produce and many local artisan products. 

The GFM is easy to find, and parking is free across the street. If the lot is full, there are multiple parking lots nearby and within a short walk. 

Organic Produce
Photo: Tragically Hip Living
So, what are the offering's at the Gilbert Farmers Market? Well, the GFM has offering's a plenty, farm fresh organic in season produce that is grown locally from a number farms. The variety of organic vendors has something for everybody, handmade pasta, hummus, honey, spices and rubs, even some tasty deserts ranging from cakes and pies to snack bars plus so much more. In the market for some plants? No problem GFM has a vendor that offers a select variety of plants at a fantastic price.

Photo: Tragically Hip Living
The Gilbert Farmers Market isn't just for shopping, it's a gathering place as well,  and a tragically hip place to grab some tasty grub from one of the many food booths, or just hang out and have a cup of Joe, perhaps some tea, or other beverages offered. Maybe take in some sun and do a little people/dog watching, whatever your preference, it's a great way to start off a relaxing Saturday.

The vibe of the GFM can only plant a smile on your face with all the activity surrounding you.

Photo: Tragically Hip Living
But the tasty grub doesn't stop there, the Gilbert Farmers Market plays host to an abundance of food trucks that is simply a plethora of cuisine on wheels. The variety the food trucks offer is wide, with many choices, vegetarian, pretzels, Mexican, Polynesian, popcorn, maybe a baked potato, in season inspired choices, waffles, even vegetarian,  the choices are many. For the Chicago style hot dog lover, a Vienna Beef hot dog can be found here,  how frickin' nice is  that! 

Photo: Tragically Hip Living
Without a doubt, buying organic is more expensive than regular produce, but to be honest, some of the produce is comparable to buying produce from a grocery store, the same is true for all the organic products at the GFM. The benefits of purchasing from GFM, besides being fresh, the quality and pride each of the vendor's offer in their products will be the first thing you'll notice. It's an experience, one you certainly wouldn't get from a grocery store, the market creates community and awareness of what is local to the area. 

Supporting local business owners can only profit the community by keeping it local. Many big box stores lack the quality and personal touch in the products they sell. 

The Gilbert Farmers Market is located at 222 N. Ash Street, Gilbert, Arizona, 85296.

For more information, visit the Gilbert Farmers Market at, or on Facebook for the latest news and hours of operation.

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