Market open from 8-11 a.m. east side of Hardin Park

Spring is in the air and with that comes the thought of planting flowers and/or a vegetable garden. Some people like the fresh grown produce, but do not want to go to the trouble of planting them. Well, no worries, the Mexico Area Farmers' Market is here to help.
The Mexico Area Farmers' Market will open for the season Saturday on the east side of Hardin Park and there will be fresh produce, among other items, available to market-goers.
Joining the returning vendors will be two new ones – one from Vandalia and the other from Martinsburg. "The vendor from Vandalia will offer hormone free, free range fryers; and the vendor from Martinsburg will provide bedding plants and produce," explained Bob Stanford who, along with his wife Ruth, oversees the market for the Mexico Area Chamber of Commerce.
A new feature this year will be a basket drawing each week filled with items from the vendors. The winner does not have to be present to win, but the basket needs to be picked up by 11 a.m. at the end of the market. There will also be free coffee for shoppers.
The Mexico Farmer's Market has also gone hi-tech and is now on Facebook. On the site there will be a list of the vendors, and the Stanfords have posted information about each vendor and links to vendors' websites.
To top things off the market has a new logo "Buy Fresh, Buy Local, Eat Better."
Dana Keller, chamber executive director is excited about the opening of the market and the new additions. She also has praise for the Stanfords."Bob and Ruth really, really work hard to bring new and exciting things," she stated.
Keller said the vendors have been rearranged to be more patron friendly and picnic tables have been added so those attending may sit and visit.
Bob Standford states they hope the Mexico Area Farmers' Market will be a place people will want to be on Saturday morning and hopefully the new additions will bring in more people.
 A variety of items from eggs to flowers will be available throughout the summer. "You can expect fresh farm eggs, beef, pork, early produce including vine ripe tomatoes, asparagus and lettuce," explained Bob Stanford. There will also be a line of focaccia bread, yeast rolls and breads, baked items including pies, cinnamon rolls and homemade jellies.
The Mexico Area Farmers' Market is a project of the Mexico Chamber of Commerce. The goals are to provide the citizens of Mexico and the surrounding area an opportunity to obtain fresh and healthy produce and products made and produced by people living here in the county and the surrounding counties; and to provide area farmers and producers an alternate source to distribute and market some of their products.
"The market is a producer's market," said Stanford. This means vendors must produce, grow, make or prepare all items presented for sale and must reside in the surrounding area such as Audrain, Boone, Callaway, Monroe, Montgom-ery, Pike and Ralls counties. Vendors may purchase a season pass for $65 or a daily pass for $7. The market is open from 8-11 a.m. each Saturday through Oct. 2; when there is an abundance of produce it will also be open from 4:30-6 p.m. on Wednesdays.