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Farm Bureau Farmers Market a hit with customers, vendors
by Savannah Weeks
sweeks@neighbornewspapers.com
August 01, 2012 06:13 PM | 1409 views | 0 0 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Market vendor Mike Taylor displays a ripe tomato. Taylor picks all his tomatoes the morning of the Farmer’s Market for perfect ripeness.
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Along with thick air and afternoon thunderstorms, summer brings a bounty of fruits and vegetables, many of which are sold on Friday afternoons from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Paulding County Farm Bureau’s Farmers Market until Nov. 30.

Market manager Shannon Davidson said the market usually attracts between 200 and 400 customers on any given Friday.

An array of tomatoes, figs, okra, eggplant, squash and other vegetables color the tents of the 14 vendors at the farmers’ market, which is at the intersection of Marietta Highway and Hiram-Acworth Highway.

Ken and Jason Cook own and operate Spreading Oaks Farm in the New Georgia community.

The family has owned the farm for 15 years, but has been participating and growing for markets for two years now, they said.

About 25 people participate in a CSA, or community supported agriculture, group with the farm.

“We plant for twice our membership and bring what we have left to the market,” Ken Cook said.

The family plants 27 different varieties of tomatoes, along with squash, cantaloupes, okra, cucumbers and other vegetables on their 18 acres of farmland.

Entrepreneur Mark Engle sells two varieties of peanut brittle at the market: cinnamon and cayenne.

“The glaring difference between my brittle and others is that mine does not have any corn syrup in it,” Engle said. “It gives it a softer, more caramel and butter taste.”

Engle, a Boston transplant now living in Marietta, has been cooking his mother’s brittle for about 10 years, he said.

He sells the candy, known as “Boston Brittle,” in Theo’s Brother’s Bakery in West Cobb and makes the brittle at Aspens Signature Steaks in Marietta, where he works.

“My mom made it her whole life,” Engle said. “She used to put it in our stockings every year at Christmas.”

Other vendors at the market sell homemade goods such as lotion, jams and “redneck glassware.”

John and Bonnie Hall of Powder Springs, have sold wine glasses, margarita glasses and champagne flutes made from Mason jars and candlesticks to residents up and down the eastern U.S. as a part of their “Granny Davis’s Redneck Collection.”

The collection is named after Ms. Hall’s grandmother, who taught her to drink out of a Mason jar with the lid on it because her drink would stay colder and would not spill.

“Nothing says Georgia quite like a set of redneck wine glasses,” said Hall.
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