if you’re interested in buying a variety fresh produce, herbs, meats, cheeses, flowers, etc, you should start checking out the local farmers’ markets. there are so many that I’m sure to miss several of them, but here’s the list I’ve gathered:
there are several locations of farmers’ markets in Minneapolis. the Lyndale Market is at Lyndale Ave and Glenwood Ave (just north of 394, south of hwy 55). you can park for free under the I-94 bridge, which is really nice. it’s open every day during its season, which is April to mid-November, 6am – 1pm. (and then they sell Christmas trees from mid-November through Christmas Eve).
Nicollet Mall Market is open every Thursday during its season, which is from May until mid-November, 6am – 6pm. it runs along Nicollet Mall, spanning from S 5th Street to S 12th Street.
the Mill City Market is also located in Minneapolis. it’s located right by the Guthrie Theater, and is open on Saturdays from 8am-1pm from May until mid-October. Spoonriver sells gluten-free crepes at their crepe stand. also, Aunt Else’s Aebleskiver’s now sell a gluten-free aebelskiver mix at this farmers market (along with other locations).
the Northeast Minneapolis market is open on Saturdays from 9am-1pm, from June through mid-October. one highlight for the celiac crowd here is that one bonus at this market is that The Roving Dish sells gluten-free (and vegan) pancakes and fritters!
the University of Minnesota has a farmers’ market from early July through early October, open on Wednesdays from 11am-2pm. besides fresh vegetables, they have a few drinks and foods to eat, some health services, and even free outdoor concerts during July.
St Paul has an extensive list of locations, from various places within St Paul, to South Saint Paul, West Saint Paul, Roseville, Inver Grove Heights, Oakdale, Woodbury, Maplewood, Apple Valley, Burnsville, Lakeville, Savage, Roseville, Hugo, Andover, and Rosemount. like I said, it’s quite extensive. each of these are open at least one day per week.
another market in St Paul is the Highland Village Farmers’ Market. they run from early June through September, 7:30-11:30am.
also beyond the one listed in the St Paul link, Woodbury has a second market. the other Woodbury Farmers’ Market runs from mid-June through the beginning of October. it’s open on Friday afternoons from 3-7pm on Cooper St & Railroad Ave. there are various special events that they host, such as cooking contests (posted on their websites). they have between 10-15 vendors.
Centennial Lakes Farmers’ Market is new (located in Edina). it’s on Thursday afternoons from 3-7pm, starting in July and going through the end of September. parking is free at many of the adjacent lots. approximately 25 vendors sell their goods at this market.
Eagan Market Fest is held on Wednesdays 4-8pm at the community center, from the end of June through mid-September. they hold a food drive at the market each week, along with various special events. there’s also live music, concessions, children’s activities, etc. you could make quite a day of it!
Bloomington Farmers’ Market is held on Saturdays from 8am-1pm, from mid-June through mid-October. then from mid-November through mid-December indoors. there are around a dozen vendors at this market.
Hopkins has their market on Saturdays from 7:30am-noon, from mid-June through October in their downtown area. downtown Hopkins is a fun place to spend the day shopping (mostly antiques) and grabbing a bite to eat, not to mention their various festivals that occur on various Saturdays. it only has about a dozen vendors, but with these other factors, it can be a fun outting.
Minnetonka’s Farmers’ Market is held on Tuesday from 3-7pm at the civic center. they have 44 vendors, produce, meats, cheeses, canned goods, maple syrup, and many other items.
the New Hope market is held in the KMart parking lot from mid-June through mid-October. it’s on Saturdays from 8am-1pm. there are 50 vendors at this market, so it’s one of the larger ones. they have live entertainment and children’s activities.
Maple Grove has a market at their community center from mid-June to late October. it’s open from 3-7pm through September, and then from 3-6pm in October. this is a large market, with 60 vendors. they have music every market day, along with demos and activities for kids.
there are many, many other farmers’ markets in Minnesota, such as in Rochester, St Cloud, Duluth, Bemidji, etc. the list in that link is non-extensive, so if your city isn’t listed, just try and find your city’s information online.