Author Lynn Ogryzlo will be at Ancaster Farmers' Market! Wed Sept 21st!

We are absolutely thrilled to announce renowned author, Lynn Ogryzlo is coming to Ancaster with her new book - The Ontario Table. More then a cookbook, Lynn challenges us to the "$10 a week challenge" - If every household in Ontario spent $10 a week on local food and wine, we’d have $2.4 billion in our economy at the end of the year. Thats one year! Think of what local farmers and producers could do with that kind of support and investment! We invite you to join us on Wednesday September 21st from 3-5pm for a meet and greet and book signing with Lynn! Ancaster Farmers' Market is located at 272 Wilson Street East. (behind St John's Anglican Church.

Two days, three trips, and lots of corn

Hamilton Eat Local made the most of Cornfest at Shearlea Acres this past weekend! With a public Rural Routes trip Saturday morning, a trip Saturday afternoon with members of the Community Access to Child Health (CATCH) program and a trip Sunday with the Hamilton East Kiwanis Boys and Girls Club, more than 100 people took an HSR bus out to the Lynden, ON farm.

The rain held off while we got a tour of the grounds. The 80-acre property holds a wide variety of fruits and veggies. Farmer Kevin Clugston showed off his crops and equipment while he explained how daily operations work at Shearlea. We then stopped to visit the family's miniature horse and Silkie chickens before heading to the farm store for all-you-can-eat free corn and other treats.

At the farm store, the kids in particular enjoyed the chance to fill their shopping bags. Some of the freshly picked produce was new to them, so they were excited to bring home new dinner ideas. Once shopping was done, there were places to sit and take in the countryside air and an outdoor play place for the kids to enjoy before boarding the bus and returning home. Special thanks to Hamilton Community Foundation for their support, so that we are able to offer Rural Routes to organizations such as the Kiwanis Club and CATCH. Thank you to Shearlea Acres for their time, offering us tasty fruit and cake, and donating some of their popping corn for the kids.

There are two scheduled Rural Routes trip remaining - the Boar and Chick Farm on Saturday September 10th. Enjoy a family day meeting farmers Tania and Mark. NEW! Sat October 15th tour is heading to Simpler Thyme Organic Farm. For more information visit and click on "Rural Routes"

Neighbour to Neighbour takes a trip to Simpler Thyme

Members of the Neighbour to Neighbour community centre, with the support of Hamilton Community Foundation and Hamilton Eat Local, enjoyed a trip to Simpler Thyme Organic Farm on July 30th. The curious and energetic group was given a tour by farmer Ann Lanigan, who offered a unique look into life in one of Hamilton’s rural communities.

As she showed us some of the more than 250 varieties of fruits and vegetables she grows, the group learned that Ann’s work at Simpler Thyme was a labour of love. When she moved out to the Freelton area from downtown Hamilton 25 years ago, she didn’t plan on farming, she explained. Now, she has volunteers from across the world who are there helping her grow and harvest.

First, she talked with us about concerns facing farmers in Ontario, as well as her efforts to eat a completely local diet. She then led us through her garden, where she challenged us to identify the various plants. With the help of one member of Neighbour to Neighbour, she even discovered a new variety in her garden. Then, in the forested half of the 50-acre farm, she described the hard work that goes into harvesting maple syrup from the trees in a traditional and sustainable way.

At the greenhouse of Bill Orosz, who owns half of Simpler Thyme, Ann showed us the various natural methods (from thick plastic to geothermal technologies) that the building uses to simulate a warmer climate. In the greenhouse, Bill has grown bananas, papayas and other tropical fruits. We then stopped by to see Ann’s pigs and chickens before heading back to her home for refreshments and market shopping.

The adventure with Neighbour to Neighbour is one of five trips for Hamilton community centres that Hamilton Eat Local is helping to organize this summer and fall. Be sure to get your tickets for Hamilton Eat Local's Rural Routes tours, which are open to the public.

Farmers' Market Update

Now in the heat of summer, to keep your fridge stocked with fresh, local fruits, veggies and other products from Hamilton's farmers' markets!

Ancaster Farmers' Market is one of the city’s largest and most scenic outdoor markets, open every Wednesday from 3-7pm until the first week of October. Come by for live music every week, and to visit market mascots Benni the pygmy goat and Frank the giant rabbit! The market is located at St. John's Anglican Church, 272 Wilson Street East (corner of Halson St), in the Ancaster Heritage Village.

Binbrook Farmers' Market is open Saturday mornings from 8am to noon at the Binbrook Fairgrounds (2600 Regional Road #56). It's sponsored by the Binbrook Agricultural Society, which is gearing up for its 157th Binbrook Fair from September 16th-18th.

Downtown Farmers' Market underwent renovations over the winter and was reopened in Jackson Square (York Blvd side) in February. Its hours are Tuesdays 7am-6pm, Thursdays 7am-6pm, Fridays 8am-6pm and Saturdays 6am-6pm. In addition to its themed cooking classes, Saturdays at the market feature Kids in the Kitchen (10-10:30am), the Market Fresh Cooking Demonstration (11-11:30am) and live entertainment every other weekend in the market food court.

Dundas Farmers' Market is located in Municipal Parking Lot 7D at Hatt Street and Miller’s Lane and is open every Thursday from 3-7pm until October 27th.

Locke Street Farmers' Market is back for a second year, open every Thursday from 3-7pm at 211 Locke Street South (Fenian Films parking lot - across the street from Locke Street Bakery). The market will run until the end of October.

Makers' Market, open outside Christ’s Church Cathedral (252 James Street North), is in its fifth season. Browse art, photography, jewellery, clothing, gifts and accessories made by local and independent artists. It’s open on Saturdays from 10am to 3pm, and during Art Crawl on the second Friday of every month.

McMaster Farm Stand was started last year as a project of the McMaster Students Union, and is back for another season, having celebrated its grand opening for the year on July 13th. It will be open two days a week, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 11:30am to 3pm. The farm stand will feature deals on in-season produce. It is located on the McMaster campus, across from University Hall and in front of the Nina de Villers Memorial Garden.

Mountain Farmers' Market has a wide selection, friendly people and a great view of the city! It’s open every Saturday from 7am to 1pm until late October. It’s located at 19 Viewpoint Avenue, just off Concession Street.

Ottawa Street Farmers' Market is open year 'round, Fridays and Saturdays from 7am-3pm at 204 Ottawa Street North. The market is gearing up for "Sew Hungry: Food Truck Rally 2011" on Ottawa Street. The big event will take place on Friday, September 16th, 2011. Keep an eye on the market's Facebook page for details.