It was cookies and cream and everything in between along Main Street Saturday, for the opening day of the Moscow Farmers Market’s 2021 season.
Kamiah beekeeper Robert Kunasek has been coming to the market for about six years now. His DiggBee Honey booth marked the southern end of a three-block stretch of vendors offering everything from locally grown food products to arts, crafts, flowers and fresh cuisine.
“I see a lot of the same people,” Kunasek said while in between customers. “I love it. This is my day off.”
Tara Courtney gave DiggBee’s blackberry honey a big thumbs-up for its depth of flavor.“It’s excellent,” she said. “I’m a big honey connoisseur. Growing up, my friend’s dad used to have an apiary, so I have high standards. Any time I see honey, I have to stop.”
Courtney said she first experienced the Moscow Farmers Market about a decade ago, as a student at the University of Idaho. It was pretty much limited to Friendship Square and the area along Jackson Street at that time. Having recently moved back to the area from Iowa, she was impressed with the changes.
“I like that it’s grown,” she said. “I really like downtown Moscow.”
The weather cooperated for opening day, with temperatures in the upper 50s to low 60s. The morning overcast burned off by noon, leaving a spectacular spring blue-sky day.
Jethro Law was enjoying every bit of it. The very active 1-year-old wanted to explore, forcing his dad, Levi, to keep a watchful eye out.
“He likes to walk around looking at all the dogs and saying, ‘Dog,’ ” Levi Law said. “It’s a lot of adventuring.”
After a yearlong COVID-19 pandemic, that may have described everyone’s attitude Saturday. It wasn’t quite wall-to-wall people, but it was definitely busy. Most seemed to be following the local face mask ordinance.
“It’s getting back to normal, but we’re not all the way there yet,” Kunasek said.
Friendship Square lived up to its names, providing a venue for kids to play and people to visit. At the opposite end of the market, the Renaissance Fair added its flavor to the opening day activities, including more crafts booths and the Wild Thang dragon.
Sisters Cookie Company was doing booming business, but Patty’s Mexican Kitchen food truck seemed to be the crowd favorite, judging by the length of the line.
Erika Sattler, owner of Texas Ridge Farms in Deary, had a steady flow of customers as well. She had a variety of fresh and smoked “pastured pork” products available.
“For us, it’s all about regenerative agriculture,” Sattler said. “We care about the impact we’re having on the planet, and I think a lot of people here do too. We want to raise things in a way that doesn’t take away, that gives animals a good quality of life and leaves the land better off.”
Whatever Texas Ridge is doing, it’s working for Nicole Ferreira of Beaverton, Ore. The Washington State University student discovered the company’s pork and meat products last fall and came looking for its booth again this year.
“The ribs are fantastic,” she said.
This is Sattler’s fourth season selling at the Moscow Farmers Market. She was happy with what she saw on opening day.
“It’s a heck of a lot better than last year,” she said. “Last year, it rained and they were letting in 25 people at a time. This year, it seems like people are more optimistic and ready for life to get back to normal. I sure am.”
The Moscow Farmers Market runs every Saturday from May through October, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Spence may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or (208)-791-9168.