Every Tuesday from April through September, one can find the Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market at the Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market Pavilion on Coleman Boulevard beside Moultrie Middle School. If you haven’t been before, here are five reasons to check it out:
1.CONVENIENCE: Saturdays can be busy. Birthday parties, beach days, out of town trips, and simply wanting to sleep in all can make it difficult to get downtown to the big Charleston Farmer’s Market in Marion Square each week. The Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market takes place every Tuesday from 3:30-7:00, making it a convenient stop on your way home from work if you just want to do a little grocery shopping. If you want to do more than shop, it makes for a fun mid-week activity for adults and kids alike. Parking is free and abundant; there is parking in the Moultrie Middle School parking lots and in the Moultrie Plaza lot across the street. There are plenty of crosswalks and police officers around to make sure that walking to and from your car is safe amid all of the late afternoon Coleman Boulevard traffic.
2.FUN FOR KIDS: The Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market isn’t just for adults looking for a good deal on organic kale. Kids can find the kind of treats there that really get them excited: funnel cakes and snow cones! King of Pops also has a stand there, and what kid doesn’t love a popsicle on a hot and humid lowcountry afternoon? Each week there is a booth set up with some sort of kid’s activity, like facepainting or balloons. And if you have a really little one, strap that baby on and walk around a bit; the people watching will give him or her plenty of entertainment!
3.LIVE MUSIC: There’s just something about live music outdoors on a summer afternoon. Even if you’re not in the mood to shop, bring a blanket and some chairs to enjoy some quality bluegrass.
4.FOOD: Locally grown vegetables of all varieties, fruit, shrimp, fish, crab, and more can be found at the Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market. You can stock up of fresh squash, tomatoes, beans, blueberries, peaches and so much more-all of a better quality than you will find in the grocery store, and for a lower price at that. A popular vendor from week to week is Rio Bertolini’s fresh made pastas, sauces, and butters. For my fellow-carb lovers, you can mix and match different types and flavors of pasta and sauce to make a new meal after each week’s visit. My recent favorite: ricotta gnocchi with Amatriciana sauce (San Marzano tomato, onion, roasted garlic, olive oil, pancetta, white wine, crushed red pepper, salt, pepper, and basil…yum!).
While there is plenty of food to buy to take home, there is also more than enough to keep you satisfied as you peruse the row upon row of produce. Fresh boiled peanuts, smoothies and fresh juices, pork rinds, fresh cooked veggies, ribs, meatloaf cupcakes…you’ll be sure to find something to keep you satisfied!
5.GIFTS FOR OUT-OF-TOWNERS: Everyone has that grandparent, aunt, or cousin that is so hard to buy for. The Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market has saved me on more than one occasion when it comes to last minute, uniquely Charleston gifts. Why not give a bottle of Charleston mixed and flavored olive oil, or perhaps one of the many types of locally made peanut butter (hello, truffle peanut butter!)? She crab soup and shrimp and grits mixes are always favorites that you can find at the Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market, but there is so much else to choose from as well. The best part: all of the free samples you get to try while deciding what to buy!
If you haven’t had a chance to visit Mt. Pleasant Farmer’s Market, I encourage you to do so soon!