That’s what the woman said to me who had suggested I spend my Saturday morning at the Farmer’s Market in Troy, New York. She works at the office of the company we acquired, and she was helping me figure out how I was going to spend my Saturday morning before I caught my plane to return home, and while she thought the Troy Farmer’s Market was the bomb, she wasn’t sure how it compared to others. I was instructed to report back so she could brag with confidence (or not brag at all).
It was my second time in Troy, and this time I was going to have to stay over another night due to the airline schedule, giving me a little time to explore this city I knew little of. So, I had my cousin from Montrose, Pennsylvania—a 2.5 hour drive away—meet me for dinner, and we figured we could find something to do the next morning. And that something ended up being the Farmer’s Market.
We arrived early as fellas were unwinding ropes of cords to plug into giant speakers on several bandstands throughout the street. Turns out, not only was it a Farmer’s Market, but that Saturday it turned into the Troy River Street Festival on River Street from Fulton to Congress Streets. The streets were filled with over 100 artisan craft vendors from Troy, nearby Albany and other outskirt towns, and doors of the whimsical and quirky River Street shops were flung wide open to invite you in to try on their tie-died pants, custom-make a t-shirt, or smell their homemade soaps. Want to create some art on the sidewalk? No problem. There were big fat colorful chalks lying around and anyone could pick it up and create some art, including a 4-year old who was intently focused on drawing circles within circles. His work, I’m sure, will fill many an art gallery. Just you wait and see.
If you’re in need of some therapy there is the Jacki the Fudge Therapist from the Insane Fudge Company who had an insane amount of fudge laid out on a table. Of course I walked away with the peanut butter fudge. My cousin, Cathy, was smart and got an order of the Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel and when I bit into it (she was kind enough to share), just as the big chunks of sea salt hit my tongue my mouth immediately filled with saliva to counterbalance the salty surprise. The tangled mixture of chocolate, salt and caramel made me swoon. The peanut butter fudge was even more extraordinary. It’s tan appearance told you exactly what to expect—a dive into creamy peanut butter that was smooth as satin. Yes, this was therapy and I was happy to schedule a lifetime of appointments.
“They’ve got waffles with Nutella on them,” the woman at work had pointed out to me the day before. She had leaned in when she mentioned it as though she was sharing State secrets.
She had me at waffles. And Nutella.
We nearly walked the entire Festival before I finally found it. Not sure I walked enough to burn the equivalent calories, but let’s just say I did. Hello, lover.
We grabbed some food (yes, waffles and Nutella is a lunch) and sat next to the Hudson River while we took in the sun that finally made an appearance after two days of pouring rain. I’ll have to go back to see what the Farmer’s Market is like without the big Festival, but from what I could tell, the folks in Troy are proud of their wares, their goat cheese, their peanut butter and all the gorgeous fruits and vegetables that laid out for us to inspect. My guess is this is what you get with or without the festival part.
So yes, pretty good Farmer’s Market in Troy, I’d say. Sure, it was combined with the Street Festival, but it won my heart and filled my tummy with that waffle blanketed with Nutella. How can you go wrong with that? Thank you, Troy. Your Festival was a perfect way for this out-of-towner to spend her morning and your people are so wonderful, kind and terrific to chat with. I think I just might like visiting your city more often.
Do you have a favorite Farmer’s Market or Festival you like to attend? Let me know in the comments. I just might be there on business one day.