*Updated 6/21: Last month’s launch of the “Farm to Fantastic Farmers’ Market” saw not only enthusiastic local and regional support, but exceeded all expectations for attendance.
That according to Mary Karlin, a local author, cooking teacher and food writer, who is also the Superior Food Hub Liaison.
Undaunted by smoke looming from the Woodbury Fire about five miles northwest, Superior held its first farmers’ market June 14 at the newly renovated food court on Main Street.
In addition to the market, the event included a grand opening and ribbon cutting, as well.
The Superior Food Court, in historic downtown, now boasts a covered ramada, as well as individual vendor stalls with water and electricity available.
“Our newly renovated food court is colorful, inviting and designed to support community food activities—a perfect venue for the farmers’ market,” Karlin said.
The ramada’s centerpiece is a combination welcome sign and water feature where a palm tree once stood, thanks to the efforts of Superior Public Works Supervisor Anthony Huerta.
Bert Archer, co-owner of the Brick House Bakery in Superior, gave a “special shout out” to Huerta and his crew for the food court’s “artistic remodel.”
“Anthony created the vision and then made it come to life like a true artist, Archer said.
During the opening ceremonies, Superior Mayor Mila Besich honored Huerta for his part in the collaborative effort by the Copper Communities Food Hub, Town of Superior, Copper Corridor Economic Development Coalition, Southern Gila County EDC and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Archer praised Superior’s local leadership, including Besich and Town Manager Todd Pryor, who “created the opportunity for many people to benefit from good local food from the market.”
“They secured a USDA grant for the Copper Corridor that helped make the event possible,” Archer said. “There is more to come and it is exciting to be part of Superior’s development and growth.”
It was the USDA’s Rural Development Business Grant that funded the “Copper Communities Food Hub Feasibility Study,” which helped identify both local chefs and food producers, Besich said.
Copper Communities Food Hub Coordinator Shelbi Lindesmith talked about area farmers’ markets, which began in June and run through September.
Parked nearby the food court was a new, soon-to-be-refrigerated food trailer to keep local produce fresh while being transported from place to place.
The first two weeks of June saw the launch of two new farmers’ markets in Superior and Dudleyville.
The Dudleyville market is from 9 a.m. to Noon the first and third Friday of each month at its multi-generational center, 4004 N. Dudleyville Rd.
In Superior, the market will run from 4-8 p.m. on the second and fourth Friday of the month at the downtown food court.
Now in its eighth season, the Globe farmers’ market is held Saturday mornings at the Gila County Historical Museum on Highway 60.
Organizers of the successful Globe market encourage more producers and growers to sell in all three.
At the Superior market, Market Manager Holly Brantley, of Globe, said, “I am here and I am happy to do it.”
A Superior resident for more than 10 years, Archer is a baker who has participated in the Globe Farmers’ Market for a few years, as well.
Archer baked pizzas in his wood-fired oven onsite, serving them at the June 14 event, which he described as “amazing” and “fantastic.”
“I am a strong proponent of local food and cottage industry and will continue to present my artisan bread and sweet things for as long as I can,” he said.
Karlin, whom Lindesmith described as “a superstar in Superior,” hosted a cooking demonstration that highlighted local ingredients
In her role as liaison, Karlin will educate the public about the products at each market.
“I’m there to share recipes and fun ideas for consumers to weave local produce/products into their meal planning,” said Karlin.
She plans to present new recipes and samplings at each Superior market.
Beginning with this edition, Karlin will contribute a monthly food article in the Times.
“Vendors from the Superior, Globe-Miami and Dudleyville Farmers Markets will be highlighted as well as seasonal recipes,” Karlin said. “This is a very exciting time for our Copper Corridor communities.”
For vendor information on the Globe, Superior and Dudleyville markets, call Holly Brantley at 928-701-3097 or Shelbi Lindesmith at 330-592-4842.
Award winning journalist with over 18 years experience in covering local news and issues affecting rural communities. Married 37 years, my life has taken me from Phoenix to Willcox to Globe. My husband and I are both overjoyed to find ourselves in Globe-Miami, with its rich history and sense of community. This is truly home.