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One of the joys of living in Southern California is the abundance of fresh produce and the endless choices of farmer’s markets in which to purchase it. Because the weather is almost always perfect, these outdoor markets are just a great way to spend a couple of hours on a Saturday or Sunday. The farmer’s markets in Orange County have all kinds of baked goods, homemade jams, olive oils & vinegars, goat cheeses and honey. Many also have other kinds of products to try like goat milk soap, baked goods, salsas, hummus and more.  The farmer’s markets here have fresh flowers, indoor potted plants and herb plants.  If you are lucky, you’ll also catch local artisans selling handmade jewelry, art and baskets.  In the last year, with COVID raging, I’ve seen the farmer’s markets in Orange County handle it beautifully.  There is a lot of social distancing and vendors are really spread out.  It gives you an excellent opportunity to walk and get in some exercise.  While there are dozens of markets all over Southern California,  there are three here in Orange County that I visit on a regular basis.  All of them have fabulous products and great vendors who offer advice and make suggestions on their produce and products. 

The farmer’s market at the Mariner’s Church has an added perk – a thrift shop.  The farmer’s market is held in a very large parking lot that sits right outside the church’s thrift shop.  You can shop for bargain priced, gently used items that benefit you and the church OR drop off donations.  What a great way to multi-task on a Saturday morning. 

The farmer’s market at The Great Park also gives you opportunities to combine your shopping with some fun.  The park is the home to a beautiful carousel and the Great Park Balloon Ride.  Both are open to the public and might require you to book your ride in advance.  See more in the link below.  The Great Park also has an indoor ice skating rink (home to the NHL Ducks), outdoor sports fields, an art gallery and more.  I’ve attended art festivals at the park so do check out their website to plan your visit. 

The following are all located in the Irvine and Tustin areas but you can check out many more in the link I provided below.  If you live here or are just visiting, a great farmer’s market should be on your list of things to do.

THE GREAT PARK, Irvine

MARINER’S CHURCH, Bonita Canyon and Turtle Ridge Road, Irvine

. TUSTIN FARMERS MARKET, El Camino Real and 3rd Street, Tustin

FIND MANY MORE HERE:  National Farmers Market Directory

 

 

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