Friday, July 17, 2009

Clayton Farm and Community Market Newsletter for July 18, 2009

Written by Amber Southerland Polk and edited by the CFCM Board

Email with any questions, comments, article contributions or to get your own weekly copy delivered to your inbox. The Clayton Market is located at the Clayton Town Square at the corner of Main and O’Neil Street in Downtown Clayton. We are open every Saturday, April-October 8am-1pm.

Produce: Produce is in full swing at the market. We have cantaloupes, watermelon, all kinds of tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, potatoes, corn, okra, garlic, mushrooms, beans and several herbs. So come on out to the Clayton Market this week and stock up on fresh, local fruits and vegetables.

Market the Market: I’ve started attaching a word file of the newsletter. Try printing it out and hanging it up where customers, co-workers or that friend who never checks her email can read it. Heads up Clayton Businesses: if I see the newsletter hanging up at your business I might just give you a shot out in an upcoming edition that currently reaches over 500+ local households! Maybe I’ll even send some volunteer spotters out in the community on the lookout for the newsletter. So print it out, put it up, and let’s grow our businesses together!

Music at the Market: John Spencer will be playing at the market from 10am-1pm this Saturday. John is from a musical family in Henry County, VA and was brought up in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. His mom played piano and the family would gather together and harmonized in gospel music. They also sang and played on the front porch for the entire neighborhood. John taught himself to play Guitar at age 11. By the time his family had their first TV, he was on it!
At age 14 John started with his 1st group, Terry Martin & The Bombers. John says they are a great rock & roll group and he still loves to play those songs, which are now considered classic rock.

John will be doing traditional and classic country, classic rock & roll and some gospel. He may even have a surprise change in pace at the end! John can be reached at

Now is the Time to Become a Clayton Market Vendor: So you’re not the type who jumps into anything. You’ve been reading this newsletter for months now trying to decide if you want to become part of the Clayton Market Family. Well now’s the time!

Contact us at because the newsletter readers are constantly emailing me asking for more crafts, produce, meats, eggs and local products! Wouldn’t you just love to be the one to grant their wish? Also, if you know someone with local, handmade products you would like to see at the market, encourage them to get in touch with us.

Lavender Crafts: I was really impressed with the lavender crafts from Toad Song Farm. They have beautiful lavender baskets, wands and heating pads. The Lavender hand salve went fast last week and the lavender lotion and oil smells really good. I have attached a picture of a pretty lavender basket.

How to Make Farmer Friends: Do you need A LOT of tomatoes for canning or your restaurant? Are you having a cookout that requires a grill load of corn or a 5 gallon punch bowl of watermelon? Would you like to get your hands on a large amount of honey to replace sugar in your baking? Do you need a standing order of cookies every Monday or cake every Friday? Could your storefront really use some sprucing up with a large amount of daylilies, hosta or Japanese Maple Trees? Well come make some farmer friends! Just go right up to your friendly Clayton Market vendor, tell them what you need, and be amazed at how friendly and willing to help they are. Why I wouldn’t be surprised if they invited you back to their farm to pick up your bulk items sometime later in the week or have it ready to go next Saturday at the market. Either way, they would be happy to take your bulk order and cut out those middlemen altogether!

Calling All Home Tomato Gardeners for the 1st Annual Top Tomato Contest Next Week: It’s time to start singing to those tomatoes! Only one week to go!
Please register between 8:00am-9:30am. Judging will begin at 10am sharp. Prizes will be awarded, however irresistible tomatoes eaten by our guest judges can not be returned. If you or your local business is interested in sponsoring this event please contact

Top Tomato Categories for 2009:
I. Appearance (the swimsuit portion of the contest):
Biggest tomato
Ugliest tomato
A tomato that resembles something other than a tomato

II. Taste (talent competition)
Best grape tomato
Best cherry tomato
Best tomato sandwich tomato
Best tomato grown by the youngest grower
You may enter in more than one category. No entry fee required. Tomato fame awaits!

Thanks to the Clayton Fire Department: The Smoke House safety trailer was a big hit last Saturday. I even learned a few new tips myself. For example, most of us know you should designate a family “meeting place” in case of a house fire. This assures everyone goes to the same spot and can easily be accounted for. However, did you know the most popular answer, the mailbox, is not a safe meeting place for your family? Turns out this often puts young children in the way of incoming fire trucks and emergency response vehicles. I learned that the across the street neighbor’s yard or front porch is a much safer meeting place. We hope to have the Clayton Fire Department back in the fall for more safety tips and more Smoke House exploration.

Upcoming Events: Contact if you have an event or activity you would like to bring to the Market.

• July 25: Top Tomato Contest

August is wide open. Email me if you have an event, music or demonstration you would like to share with the market. We love learning about new things or music and it’s a great promotional opportunity for local businesses, not for profits, and musicians.

Vendors for July 18
• Riverman’s Mushrooms
• Seasonal Selections
• Smith’s Nursery
• Cleveland Cake and Coffee Co.
• Toad Song Farm
• Sunday Morning Farm

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