Manatee and Sarasota Counties have enough farmers’ markets for you to visit a new one every week for a month and still have more new ones to try. Strolling around the market is a stress-reducing, low impact, and fun way to get some light exercise and sunshine; not to mention you’ll probably find some new favorite booths you’ll want to return to. Healthy, locally-sourced food options, arts, crafts, and music all contribute to a safe, family-friendly outing to enjoy. Let’s survey some of the outstanding farmer’s markets we have in our own Bradenton and Sarasota neighborhoods.
Oneco Farmers Market is open everyday from 7AM to 7PM, so this a very convenient option, as it doesn’t require as much of a plan to attend as other more limited day & time markets. Oneco Farmers Market prides itself in offering an array of multicultural restaurants with the most delicious ingredients in the freshest environment. As a place for small businesses to flourish and grow, this market enables vendors to offer products from local artists and farmers. It also hosts Monthly Events like free drive in movies. You can visit Oneco Farmers Market at 5108 15th Street East in Bradenton.
Red Barn Flea Market located in Bradenton at 1707 1st Street is another convenient option. In addition to the open-air farmers’ market it also has the distinction of 80,000 square feet of air-conditioned indoor shopping which allows for a more prolonged experience. If you start feeling hot and sun-exposed outside, take a break and wander the cool interior for some more shopping leisure; they have more than 600 booths and shops. This market is only closed on Mondays, with the entire market open from 9AM to 4PM Friday through Sunday, and the plaza only open the same times Tuesday through Thursday.
Sarasota Farmers Market was founded in 1979, and in 2009 its vendors formed a not-for-profit to further enhance the market with a focus on local farms and growers. It’s open year-round every Saturday from 7AM to 1PM, rain or shine. Check their Events Calendar for a roster of live music. Well-behaved pets are welcome with short, non-extendable leashes. The market is of course in Sarasota at 1 N. Lemon Avenue, and you can even plan to get a sneak peek of the layout with this helpful map. There are parking garages and designated street parking, all of which can be learned about on the Frequently Asked Questions page.
The Farmers’ Market at Lakewood Ranch is home to more than 50 curated vendors of the region’s food and flavors. It’s located at the Lakewood Ranch Medical Center and has ample free parking. Directions and more specific information about parking can be found here. Enjoy this market every Sunday from 10AM to 2PM. You can preview Lakewood Ranch’s vendors with this Online Directory that includes links to each. Chef Demos and Recipes are also featured at this market.
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