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Rye’s Market Farmers Escape Worst of Storm Damage

farmerthumbThe Rye Farmer’s Market is held every Sunday, rain or shine, but not Sunday, August 27, when Hurricane/Tropical Storm Irene came storming through town with a vengeance.

 

By Bill Lawyer

 

The Rye Farmer’s Market is held every Sunday, rain or shine, but not Sunday, August 27, when Hurricane/Tropical Storm Irene came storming through town with a vengeance.


farmerin2News reports from around the tri-state region described widespread damage to the many farmers whose products meet the needs of urban locavores. But the following Sunday morning, everything was business as usual at the Rye market. In all, 15 vendors displayed their wares, with many offering free samples.

 

Produce tables were groaning with the weight of tomatoes, corn, beets, greens of all kinds, and much, much more.  

 

“We’re lucky, because our fields are on higher ground,” said Donald Seder of Newgate Farms, which is up above the Connecticut River’s flood plain. “Some of the other farms in our area lost everything,” he added.  

 

Bridgett McKee, who was managing the Fishkill Farms stand, said their crops weren’t damaged by flooding, either. “But we lost some to wind and wind-driven rain damage. Whole rows of tomato plants got knocked over, like a stack of dominoes.”

 

farmerin1Both vendors said they expected it would take another week or so for them to get back in full operation.  

 

The staff at the Valley Shepherd Creamery stand said (in between giving out samples of their artisanal cheeses) that, despite the high winds,  “All our sheep and lambs are safe and accounted for.” Their grazing pastures in Long Valley, New Jersey, suffered no flooding, but the town was inundated by the East Branch of the Raritan River.  

 

Everything was mellow at the Millbrook Vineyards and Winery stand, with customers sampling a variety of whites and reds. The manager said that the heavy rains could be a problem, but as long as they have some dry weather before the fall harvest begins, they should be all right.  

 

farmerin3The effects of the storm seemed to be the last thing on the minds of most customers at the market. Some, however, were comparing notes on their personal storm experiences, while waiting in line to pay.  

 

But the general feeling seemed to be “let’s move on.” Rye’s farm goods suppliers are doing their part to keep customers well fed in the days to come.  

 

Barring extreme weather, the Rye Farmer’s Market is held every Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., in parking lot 2, behind Chase bank.


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