Illinois is home to many farmers across the state who provide local areas with fresh fruits, vegetables, and other farm-grown foods. The farmers markets in Illinois are very community-oriented and incorporate activities and entertainment into their market for visitors to enjoy. Fortunately, farmers markets are found across the state of Illinois, even in urban areas where access to locally-grown produce is less prevalent. These 9 great Illinois farmers markets offer not only fresh food, but other special opportunities like chef demos and musical performances.
Open seasonally from April to November, the Carbondale Farmers Market provides an ideal opportunity for discovering local foods at their source. This weekly market has been operating since 1975 and features around 40 - 50 vendors selling humanely-raised eggs and meats, locally-grown produce, and artisan goods. They also have live music and hold other community events throughout the year.
There’s something for everyone at the 61st Street Farmers Market. Featuring dozens of local vendors, chef demos, and live music, this is the premier farmers market of the Southside. Here shoppers can find some of the freshest eggs, cheeses, meats, produce, and prepared foods in the area.
Located in scenic northeastern Illinois, Stade’s Farm and Market features a large variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. They also offer gluten-free foods, baked goods, spices, soup mixes, and some dairy products. Although the market is closed during the winter months, it offers many seasonal attractions such as produce-picking, worship gatherings, farm rides, and a pumpkin festival throughout the year.
The Logan Square Market in Chicago is an open-air food market during the warmer months and indoor market during the fall and winter seasons. Dozens of small-scale food providers and farmers from Chicago sell their fresh foods here every Sunday. Various musical performers also come to the market to showcase their talents, as well.
Each Saturday morning from May through November thousands of residents and visitors shop at Urbana’s Market. Located downtown Urbana, this community staple features a wide selection of Illinois-grown produce, meat, dairy, honey, and even alcohol. Handmade arts and crafts are also sold at this popular outdoor market.
The Oak Park Farmers Market is nestled in the historic Village of Oak Park and open each Saturday through October. This market welcomes several independent farmers featuring a variety of fresh produce. Local musicians also provide live bluegrass music for patrons as they munch on homemade old-fashioned cake donuts, prepared at the Pilgrim Church nearby.
Tom’s Farm Market offers a wide selection of fresh produce at their Bartlett Farm Stand July through September. This family-owned market also features a garden center, bakery, gift shop, and cafe. The lunch items are made with season produce from the family farm, as well.
The Old Capitol Farmers Market in Springfield is a community-oriented place featuring many local events. Sponsored by the local St. John’s Hospital, this local market offers an impressive selection of fresh-grown produce thanks to the local farmers. Halloween at the Market is held in the fall and holds costume contests for children.
Choose from a selection of homegrown produce including squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, cabbage, and other vegetables along with local honey and jarred goods at the Keller’s Farmstand. This family-owned business also sells homegrown pumpkins and apples in the fall and offer sweet corn when they’re in season.