Taste Sarasota’s food and agricultural bounty at one of the area’s many farmers markets. Thanks to Sarasota, Florida’s year-round sunny weather, there’s no shortage of locally grown produce. Add to that a community that has a passion for great food and art, and you get the melding of agriculture, art, and culinary delights at the area’s farmers markets.
Some of the farmers markets in Sarasota County are open year-round, like the “granddaddy” market in downtown Sarasota Saturday mornings. Others are open for several months out of the year, usually from fall to spring. Almost all of the local farmers markets are open rain or shine, and just about all include live entertainment and occasional special activities for kids.
Here are a few tips before you head out to any of the great markets below:
- Arrive early for the best selection.
- Wear a hat and sunscreen.
- If you plan to go other places after your market visit, bring a small cooler so any items requiring refrigeration can stay cool.
- Get to know the vendors! They’re friendly and eager to talk about their products.
Check Out These Farmers Markets in Sarasota County
- Central Sarasota Farmers Market. Held on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. from October to June, all produce vendors at the Central Sarasota Farmers Market are growers, not resellers. Get to know Brown’s Grove, Geraldson Community Farm, and Homestead Hydroponic Farm among the growers. You can also buy local honey and get a nice cup of coffee. The Central Sarasota market takes place at the Florida House Institute at 4454 Beneva Road. When you finish strolling around the market, check out Florida House to learn more about sustainable living and environmentally friendly practices.
- Dearborn Street Market. Held October through May on Thursday mornings, the Dearborn Street Market, located at 348 West Dearborn Street in Englewood, features artisan cheeses, pies, art, and organic produce.
- Englewood Farmers Market. A Thursday farmers market is a great way to liven up the weekly routine, and the always-bustling Englewood Farmers Market is just the antidote you need. Held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. October through May, the market is a foodie dream with mushrooms, bagels, lemonades, Indian food, and farmer-market staple kettle corn. The market also has several local produce and plant growers, and the market accepts SNAP. The market takes place at the 300 block of West Dearborn Street in Englewood.
- Newtown Farmers Market. Located near Ringling College of Art and Design and New College of Florida, the Newtown Farmers Market is held in historic Newtown and offers fresh produce. It’s open on Fridays from 12 to 6 p.m. and on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., year-round.
- North Port Farmers Market. The North Port Farmers Market, held from October to April on Friday mornings, features a mix of local artists, fresh food, and plant vendors. A cooking demonstration that uses market ingredients also takes place monthly. Find the market at 4970 City Center Blvd., in North Port.
- Phillippi Farmhouse Market. Make Wednesdays special with a visit to the Phillippi Farmhouse Market at Phillippi Estate Park, held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., October to April. In addition to a variety of food and farm vendors, live music, and art, you can take the free guided tour of Edson Keith Mansion at 10 a.m. The park and the market are located at 5500 S. Tamiami Trail.
- Sarasota Farmers Market. This über-popular market is a granddaddy of all others in our area. The downtown Sarasota market has been held on Saturdays for more than 35 years. Find its 70+ vendors on Main Street and Lemon Avenue in downtown Sarasota, and enjoy prepared foods, fresh produce, herbs, plants, art, and lots of people-watching and dog-watching. It’s open from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Sarasota Farmers Market also recently started the Rosemary Farmers Market in the Rosemary District of Sarasota. This pop-up market began weekly on Thursdays and may be held monthly going forward.
- Siesta Key Farmers Market. Enjoy your beach vacation and take in the local food and art scene at the Sunday Siesta Key Farmers Market, held year-round from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Siesta Village’s Davidson Plaza. Browse the market’s produce and pottery offerings before or after you enjoy the sandy white beaches of Siesta Key.
- Venice Farmers Market. Make your way to Venice for its always delightful farmers market, held on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon year-round. The market features a wide range of vendors along with kids’ events and chef demonstrations. The Venice market is held at the 200 block of Tampa Avenue in Venice. After checking out the market, visit the stores in downtown Venice.