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Round ‘Em Up!

Our Farmers Market Roundup Is Your Guide To The Season’s Finest Locally Sourced Products

Farmers markets are year ‘round fixtures in the Nashville area but their popularity soars in October as it’s the month when milder days and bountiful harvests intersect. And while fresh produce is at or near its peak, there’s much more to be found at your neighborhood market. Beef, chicken, and fish along with fresh bakery items and canned goods typically not found at the local grocer, are readily available. There’s a reason why you might find yourself shopping next to chefs from many of Nashville’s finest restaurants.

Food trucks, crafts and body care products have become farmers market staples as well. While the markets vary in size and scope, they share many common elements. They tap into the desire of the growing number of people who are interested in supporting independent farmers, purchasing locally sourced goods, spending more quality time outside, and eating healthier food. (Although, there’s no shortage of decadent treats at farmers markets, either.)

So if you haven’t visited a farmers market this season because the weather has been too this-or-that, now is the time to make your plans. We’ve even come up with this unofficial guide to help you get started.

Franklin Farmers Market
230 Franklin Road
Every Saturday in October, 8 a.m. to Noon

Our journey begins close to home at the Franklin Farmers Market, located behind The Factory at Franklin at the corner of Franklin Road and Liberty Pike. This isn’t the largest market in the area but, due to its location and roster of top-quality vendors, it is one of the more popular ones. In addition to fresh-from-the-farm fare, a select number of local crafts makers and artisans are on hand each week as well. The non-profit market seeks to promote local family farms that it deems to be critical to Middle Tennessee’s economic and environmental viability.

Nolensville Farmers Market
7248 Nolensville Road
Every Saturday in October, 8 a.m. to Noon

Located on the site of the historic Nolensville School, the Nolensville Farmers Market has been growing about as rapidly as the rest of the town. It probably has the most rural vibe – or perhaps the least urban – of any of the markets in our roundup. The market emerged from an idea by local doctor Miro Bandalo to better serve the interests of his patients who were seeking a diet that consisted of more natural, locally sourced products.

BONUS MARKET: The Nolensville Farmers Market is produced by WilCo Events, a non-profit that also operates the Westhaven Farmers Market every Wednesday in October from 4 to 7 p.m.

East Nashville Farmers’ Market
511 Woodland Street
Every Tuesday in October, 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
This massive market boasts upwards of 150 vendors across 19 different categories. So if you like fresh produce, fresh cut flowers, beef/poultry/dairy/seafood, ready-to-eat treats, food trucks and more, you’ll find it here. Something else you’ll find that’s likely just as important: free parking. Two lots are available. One is at the corner of Sixth and Main, the other is across the street at First Church of the Nazarene. The market is associated with two other urban markets.

Richland Park Farmers’ Market at 4711 Charlotte Avenue is open every Saturday from 9 a.m. to Noon. The Wedgewood-Houston Farmers’ Market at 416 Chestnut Avenue is open every Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m.

Nashville Farmers’ Market
900 Rosa L. Parks Boulevard
Open Daily

The Nashville Farmers’ Market dates to 1801 when farmers used horses to haul their goods into the city. The modern market began to take shape in 1949 with a $1 million bond authorization by the state legislature. In 1995, it was renovated as part of the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park Development. The indoor market is open daily until 6 p.m. and is essentially a food court that specializes in fresh, eclectic local fare. Two open-air farm sheds are where the authentic farmers market action takes place, every Friday-Sunday in October from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Bellevue Farmers Market
Red Caboose Park
656 Colice Jeanne Road
Every Thursday in October, 4 to 7 p.m.

If you’re a farmers market rookie, this attractive Bellevue market is a great place to begin your journey - “starters market,” if you will. It boasts the same caliber of goods as the other markets in the roundup, but it’s smaller, so it won’t be overwhelming. The entire market can be explored in an hour or less and the adjacent, recently renovated playground makes this perhaps the best option for families with young children. Special promotions are planned throughout October as well.

Five Points Franklin Market
100 Fifth Avenue North
Tuesday, October 17, 4 to 7 p.m.

This specialty market in downtown Franklin is open for just a handful of dates each year, including Tuesday, October 17. The entire idea behind the market is to provide a midweek gathering place where families and friends can relax, listen to music, and enjoy good, locally grown and sourced food.