New Vendor: Lake Catherine Blueberries

Tonight will be the first night at Audubon Park Community Market for Lake Catherine Blueberries.  This blueberry and citrus farm has been in farmer Dustin Lowe’s family for over 100 years (first as a citrus grove, and more recently with blueberries).  Dustin and his wife Jamie run the farm with their family, opening it to the public for u-pick when the berries are in full swing.  I drove out there with Heather (A Local Folkus‘ and East End Markets‘ Communications Guru) to check the place out and get to know the growers.  We hopped into a snazzy Green Gator and drove around the property with them, seeing the lovely sights on the shore of Lake Catherine. We had an absolutely lovely visit on the farm, and we are excited to invite another wonderful family farm to the market.
Be sure to visit and get to know them yourselves, at the market tonight!  In the meantime, here are some photos from our visit!




Farmer Spotlight: R&B Organics/Viera Meadow Farm

Every so often, we check in with our producers to check out where they are growing or crafting their wares.  It’s partly about keeping everything as out in the open as possible, but also because it’s a fun way to connect the dots in our local food system.  I recently made it out to visit Dan Jameson of R&B Organics/Viera Meadow Farm. Dan grew up on a farm up north, and I’m grateful he brought his knowledge of growing to Florida.  He’s also very committed to keeping the farmers in farmers markets, which we love here at A Local Folkus.  Out on his farm in Melbourne, he grows a little bit of everything.  It’s all grown in the ground to organic standards, and I have found all of his produce to be quite delicious.  I’ll let the pictures do the rest of the talking.

Gabby Othon Lothrop, Market Director

PS – Yes, they DO have A LOT of collards (3 different varieties!).  Should we have a recipe contest? Share your thoughts in the comments section!


Welcome our newest grower to the market!

Last week, I paid a visit to a new local grower, Sista Susie’s Organic Garden.  As you may know, I like to get to know our producers by visiting them where they grow, make, catch, or raise their goods.  It was an absolute pleasure meeting this avid gardener, who has turned what started out as a kitchen garden into an urban oasis.  Suzy and her brother started the garden in order to grow healthier food for themselves and their friends.  Luckily for all of us, this means lots of surplus goods for Suzy to sell at the market.  Check out some of the highlights from my visit below!

Gabby Othon Lothrop, Market Director

Sista Susie's Organic Garden SONY DSC


The Market Minute at Audubon Park

With all the fun projects we have going on (East End Market, A Local Folkus, etc.), we’ve decided to start keeping track of some of the great local food and community happenings here in Orlando.  Here’s our first market minute, featuring yours truly.  Be kind; I was post-market-setup and therefore not particularly glamorous.  But the real stars here are the vendors and their fabulous wares!


Happy New Year! We're Baaaack!

Happy New Year from the team at Audubon Park Community Market!  We definitely enjoyed the break, but we are ready to get back to re-connecting with the community over delicious local food and more.  To help you tackle our first night back in business, here are some quick links to what some of our wonderful vendors are bringing along!
Big Wheel Provisions – Truck Menu & Provisions List

Wild Ocean Seafood Market – Shopping List & Seafood Spotlight

And don’t forget to follow our vendors on Facebook to keep track of updates!  Here’s a sampling:

Chews Naturally

Crispy Farms

Escentual Harmony Handmade Soaps

Heart of Christmas Farms

Restoration Vintage

We’ll share some more social media links next week.  For now, we just look forward to seeing you at the market!

An Important Note about the Holiday Schedule

Happy Holidays from the gang at A Local Folkus!  As always, I am very glad to see so many of you making local food and artisanal products a part of your holiday (and everyday) shopping.  I think the market is a great place to pick up unique gifts, gather the ingredients for a delicious holiday meal, and celebrate the season among neighbors and friends.  As you schedule your activities for the last few weeks of the season, please keep in mind: THE MARKET WILL NOT BE OPEN ON DECEMBER 24TH AND 31ST. All of the market’s wonderful vendors will be celebrating the Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve with their friends and family, and I think they’ve earned it.
While this means the market will be taking the longest break ever since we moved to Stardust 4 years ago, our team wants to make sure we do everything we can to make the market a part of your holiday season.  That’s why we’re packing in some extra vendors on December 17th to broaden your shopping options and end the year with a bang!  You’ll find extra gift options, party favors, and tasty treats to include in your festivities.  Keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter for gift ideas every day until then.  I look forward to seeing you there and celebrating with you.

And that’s not all.  Some of your favorite vendors will be taking orders for pickup on Christmas Eve from 12:00 to 6:00 p.m.  The friendly folks over at the Audubon Park Garden District have opened up their headquarters (right across the street from Stardust) as a pick-up site that day.  Be sure to check with your preferred vendors to find out if they are offering this service.  If so, most orders will need to be placed at the Market on December 17th – it’s going to be a big day for all of us.

Again, thank you for helping to make the market such a special weekly occasion.  I look forward to celebrating at the last market of the year with you, and hope you find just the right gifts and tasty treats for your holiday celebrations.

Gabby Othon Lothrop

Director, Audubon Park Community Market & Co-Founder, A Local Folkus