For the last 31 years, Greenmarkets in New York City have been bringing local farmers and city residents together for their mutual benefit. The farmers get an outlet for their products and city dwellers get beautiful, fresh food at reasonable prices -- plus a chance to get to know people whose way of life is so different from their own.
Every day of the week from spring through Thanksgiving, there's a Greenmarket somewhere in New York City. Sixteen of the Greenmarkets run year round.
The largest is on Union Square in Manhattan. On a typical Saturday in the height of the growing season, around 60,000 people shop there.
But there are Greenmarkets throughout the boroughs that are as central and haimish as the old wells and fountains in European villages. These are places where neighbors run into each other and chat and where it's easy to strike up a conversation even with a stranger.
For visitors to New York, a neighborhood Greenmarket is a great way to meet New Yorkers — and also to cut down on the cost of a New York City visit.
On a Saturday, stop by the Tribeca Greenmarket, for instance, on Greenwich Street just north of Chambers. Buy some fresh fruit (strawberries, blueberries and peaches are in season, with apples and pears on the horizon), some cheese, bread, milk or yogurt, and maybe some carrots and cucumbers, and take your picnic into the Washington Market Park, which is right next to the Greenmarket.
For Greenmarket schedules and locations, see www.cenyc.org/site http://www.cenyc.org/site.
Meet a Greenmarket merchant at http://www.TravelArtsSyndicate.com/fish