Fresh produce, crafts and music herald the start of a Scappoose summer staple

Aside from working as Scappoose Planning Commissioner and managing the Farmers Market, Blank was recently named Interim Executive Director of Columbia County Habitat For Humanity. As the wet season comes to an end, area farmers and artists will be helping locals enjoy the weather — rain or shine.

Entering its 11th season, the Scappoose Farmers’ Market will open Saturday, May 18, and will run every Saturday through Sept. 28 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Market Manager Bill Blank said all of the “usual suspects” will be there, and with the trend-breaking warm weather, produce vendors will be able to provide more than is typical at this point in the season.

Some produce vendors have almost 40 varieties already available. Typically, nursery items and greenhouse-grown produce dominate the market early in the season.

And the market offers much more than just marquee locally grown produce.

“Several of our favorite vendors are returning, such as Steve Shaft, the local heirloom tomato king, Victorian Acres Bakery, Sulina & Bay’s Farm, Wildhare Backyard Farm, A&B Berries, Jockey Hill Nursery, and several others, plus, some new vendors such as Samba Baskets,” Blank said.

Blank added that Samba Baskets are based in Washington, but attend area markets. “They weave unique African baskets at the market from materials native to their homeland. Not only do they make a practical item to carry your produce and such at the market, they also entertain,” he said.

Blank said that on top of additional craft vendors, the market will host more food vendors than usual this year including pitas, Greek sandwiches, pizza, Mexican food and Asian food.

“If we get many more food vendors, we’re going to have to open up a food court,” Blank said.

Music is booked for almost every market, Blank said. The duo “Kingkik” will play opening day, Saturday. The married couple has been performing at the market for several years and plays instruments such as the washboard and wash-tub bass.

Blank was recently named interim executive director of Columbia County Habitat for Humanity, an organization with which he has been serving on the board of directors. “Serving as an integral part of a team of dedicated people as the affiliate’s executive director means moving forward and accomplishing those dreams and goals that change people’s lives by providing families an opportunity to own a home and develop pride in being a good neighbor,” he said.

The Scappoose Farmers’ Market will be held next to Heritage Park and behind Scappoose City Hall.

For more information about the Farmers’ Market, contact Bill Blank at 503-543-3469.

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