Marissa Miller of Lost Barn Farm in East Putney — the unofficial historian of the Putney Farmers’ Market — makes a sale.
Courtesy of Putney Farmers Market
Marissa Miller of Lost Barn Farm in East Putney — the unofficial historian of the Putney Farmers’ Market — makes a sale.

‘You will find a lot at this little market’

Putney Farmers‘ Market celebrates 15 years of connecting community to local food, crafts, and more

PUTNEY-The Putney Farmers' Market - "a localvore marketplace, located in the heart of downtown Putney," as described by its manager, Jill Green - celebrates its 15th season as a place for customers to connect directly with food producers and farmers from the region.

Green, who has sold goods at farmers markets for 14 years and has served as an assistant manager and co-manager of the Brattleboro markets, describes her role in Putney as "truly my dream job."

The 40 vendors - 21 full-season and 19 occasional - include farmers who offer fresh and nutritious seasonal produce, pasture-raised meat, and eggs; purveyors of food who offer gourmet cheeses, baked goods, coffee, specialty ferments, and tasty lunch optionsl and crafters who offer handmade gifts.

"And so much more," says Green.

Green tells The Commons that this season the market will offer live music each week, as well as a wider variety of prepared food, and special events each Sunday, such as the Caterpillar Lab, the Community Engagement Tent, and Kids Day.

"Our mission is to educate the community about local agriculture, to connect the community with local producers while supporting farmers, creators, and the overall health and wellness of our valued customers and the larger Putney community," she adds.

"A day at the market and community gardens is a great way to meet your farmers and learn where your food comes from while supporting the local economy and helping build a resilient food system," Green says.

She says that food insecurity is a widespread issue.

To help address this need, the market participates in the Crop Cash program from the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont, which provides an extra $10 of produce to all customers who receive assistance from the state's 3SquaresVT (SNAP) program.

"We also offer the Farm to Family program, which offers eligible households coupon booklets to spend on fresh produce at farmers' markets," Green adds.

Growth, interrupted

Marisa Miller, who serves as a sort of unofficial historian of the Putney Farmers' Market, says that the market was formed by a group of community members from the Putney Food Co-op and Transition Putney, a grassroots group dedicated to community resiliency.

The market started in the fall of 2010, with a six-week fall season. The following May marked the start of the Putney Farmers' Market's first full season.

"We didn't have a manager for six years so it was a vendor-run market. It got to be too much, so we were able to hire a manager in 2017, which was instrumental in the growth and success," says Miller, the co-owner of Lost Barn Farm.

"We turned a corner and things were going great in 2019. It was the best season we ever had and so many vendors were applying," she says.

And then, in 2020, the Covid pandemic shut everything down.

"I was worried that we wouldn't recover," Miller says.

But then, in 2021, the market hired Green, who Miller described as "a wonderful manager [who] gets things done."

"She is good at keeping everyone on track, there is still a degree of vendor participation, and we all have to pull our weight," adds Miller.

No one has been keeping track of attendance, but Miller estimates that several hundred people show up on any given Sunday.

Looking forward to future growth, Miller foresees "some more veggie farmers, but otherwise it's a good mix of a few different cheeses, raw milk, lots of meat, different prepared food vendors, baked goods, flowers, crafts, etc."

"You might not find everything you were looking for, but you will find a lot at this little market," she says.

This season's participating vendors

Agriculture: Amandola Farm, Leaping Bear Farm, Livewater Farm & Dairy, Lost Barn Farm, Lucia Rising Flowers, Morse Brook Farm, Rebop Farm, Slipstream Farm, Some Such Farm, Vermont Shepherd.

Craft: Ancient Iris Alchemy, Allen's Artists Charcoal, Beaver Pond Shop, Blossom Winks Creative, Crafter's Cabin, Flatlander Supply Co., Forestview Beading, Heart of the Earth Arts, Kimberly Ann Prints, Masterman Ceramics, Nicholas Aesthetics, Starfish Farms Handmade, Sacred Vessel, Shiatsu School of Vermont, The Wool Tinker.

Prepared foods: Ben's Brickyard BBQ, Counter Cultures Kitchen, East Alstead Roasting Company, Grandview Gourmet Bakery, Jamu Indonesian Foods, Sacred Earth Fresh Pressed Juice, Susan's Lemonade, Thai Hut.

Botanicals: August Purcell, Grace Farm, Naturally Friendly Soap, Larsdalen Lavender, Solidago Botanical Arts.

* * *

The Putney Farmers' Market is open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Sunday through Oct. 20. The market, at 8 Carol Brown Way at the Putney Community Gardens, across from the Putney Food Co-op, accepts cash, checks, and debit/credit cards as well as 3SquaresVT/SNAP for payment.

For more information, visit

This News item by Victoria Chertok was written for The Commons.

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