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The Bounty Keeps Coming at Utah's Farmers Markets

Judy Fahys/KUER
Utah's farmers markets are still bustling with just over a month to go before the season ends.

Fall is here and that usually means that farmers markets are beginning to close. But the crowds and the harvests are so big this year that the Ogden Farmers Market is extending its season.

In fact, it’s been a record summer for the farmers market at Ogden’s historic 25th Street. More than 100,000 people have already come out to buy local honey, baked goods, produce and crafts this year, so organizers have decided to keep it open through October 10.

“The idea is that you actually get to meet the farmers who produce the food and talk to them about it,” says Dan Musgrave, director of Ogden’s downtown business alliance. “It’s all fresh; it’s all local; and it’s very nutritious.”

Ogden’s market started 15 years ago with 20-vendors in a dirt lot. Now there are 200 vendors, and it’s the place to see and be seen Saturday mornings. It’s just one of dozens of farmers markets that have sprouted in Utah from Logan to Price to Saint George and all along the Wasatch Front.

Perry-based Tagge family farms are headed out to several of them this weekend with the last of this year’s peaches and just-picked apples. Thayne Tagge says it’s not the winter squash that signals the season’s end.

“Until I see that one day where it’s like, ‘Oh-my-gosh --things are going to freeze out’,” he says. “We haven’t even gotten that wave of people to come through yet. So, there’s a little ways to go this year.”

The farmers’ market in Murray’s City Park began 34 years ago. It’s the state’s oldest and a no-frills destination for Utah-grown farm goods and edibles. It’s over at the end of October, after most of Utah’s already had a first freeze.

Judy Fahys has reported in Utah for two decades, covering politics, government and business before taking on environmental issues. She loves covering Utah, where petroleum-pipeline spills, the nation’s radioactive legacy and other types of pollution provide endless fodder for stories. Previously, she worked for the Salt Lake Tribune in Utah, and reported on the nation’s capital for States News Service and the Scripps League newspaper chain. She is a longtime member of the Society of Environmental Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors. She also spent an academic year as a research fellow in the Knight Science Journalism program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In her spare time, she enjoys being out in the environment, especially hiking, gardening and watercolor painting.
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