2014: New Year, New You!

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Resolutions. Everyone makes them when the New Year rolls around, but the question is, do you keep them? And are they even attainable?

Setting achievable goals for the upcoming year to make a better you is important. Eating well and shopping local are two attainable resolutions you can make – and keep! – with the help of the Delray GreenMarket.  Here are some ways you can start the New Year right and keep them going the whole year through.

1. Be bold and try new things! The GreenMarket is full of tasty, unique and hard-to-find products such as olives stuffed with blue cheese, organic empanadas and whey better butter, you just might find something you never knew that you’ve always loved!

2. Get your daily servings of fruits and veggies. Most of us don’t eat enough fruits and veggies. At the Market they are plentiful, with Interesting varieties and options for anyone to enjoy. In season right now are varieties of peppers, tomatoes, squash, zucchini, eggplant, corn, lettuce, arugula and herbs.  And, for citrus lovers, enjoy oranges, grapefruit and tangerines.

3. Healthy dietary/lifestyle choices. There are lots of choices at the Delray GreenMarket, whether you choose to eat organic, vegan, free-range, gluten-free or sugar-free, there is something for everyone’s dietary preferences or needs.

4. Support local businesses. The products you buy and money you spend at the Delray GreenMarket stays in the local community and directly benefits the vendor. Skip the grocery store and find delicious treats from your neighbors instead of products that are transported from thousands of miles away.

5. Get some fresh air & exercise. Enjoy the warm weather and Vitamin D from the South Florida sun as you stroll around the market. After shopping, venture a little east and head down Atlantic Avenue to the beach!

And remember to visit us on Saturday, January 18 between 10am and 11am to receive $2.00 in GreenMarket bucks to spend with any GreenMarket vendor!

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“Saving the life of one dog may not change the world, but the world will surely change for that one dog.”


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Every weekend at the GreenMarket our (furry) friends at TriCounty Humane Society and Dezzy’s Second Chance Rescue bring their cuddly, adoptable dogs looking for their forever homes.

When thinking about adding a pet to the family, it’s important to do your research. Adopting a rescue makes your new pet even that much more special. Not only do you find the gift of a loving animal friend, but you give them the gift of hope and a new forever home. Here are some tips to keep in mind when considering adopting a pet especially during the holiday season.

  1. Bring your whole family. Make sure everyone is agreeable and will take his or her own responsibility for the new addition to the family.
  2. Do your homework. Research various breeds and their demeanors along with the care, space and equipment you need to properly care for them.
  3. Narrow your search online. PetFinder.com is a one great resource to locate local animals that need homes and calling shelters directly is an option too.
  4. Consider fostering. Fostering is a great way to make sure the pet and family is a good fit before making a final commitment.
  5. Consider older dogs. Puppies don’t have the best manners so don’t rule out a well-trained and older animal that may better suit your family dynamics.
  6. Consider your lifestyle. Do you want an active dog or a mellower one?
  7. Take time to decide. Returning a pet is not like returning a toy or unwanted sweater. This is an important decision that should not be made on a whim.
  8. Adoption is less costly than a pet store. Adoption fees are minimal and saving a homeless, abandoned animal is priceless. Pet store dogs are mostly obtained from puppy mills and backyard breeders.
  9. Consider waiting until after the holidays. The holidays are a time often filled with stress, visiting guests and other craziness. It is important to ensure your new furry friend is introduced into a comfortable situation where they can more easily adjust to their new environment.

So when you think of adding a furry friend to your family, think about adopting local from a shelter such as TriCounty or Dezzy’s. Visit us at the GreenMarket on Saturdays to see some of their adoptable dogs and learn more if adopting a loving shelter dog is right for you!

Get Ready for Florida’s Winter Vegetable Bounty

By Paula Detwiller

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In recent weeks, you may have noticed that the amount and variety of vegetables available from produce vendors has been on the rise—and rest assured it will increase even more in the coming weeks.

“The only way to offer produce year-round in Florida is to ship it in from around the nation or from outside of the country, which is what the supermarkets do,” said Delray GreenMarket Manager Lori Nolan.  “But that’s not what we’re all about. We focus on locally grown and sourced produce.”

 “I tell people, it’s the beginning of the season,” said Manny Guerrero, who helps GreenMarket shoppers at the Thomas Produce booth. “The people who’ve been coming here for many years—they understand. They know the harvest is just starting.”

As the largest independent, family-owned vegetable grower in the state of Florida, Thomas Produce brings a cornucopia of Florida-grown vegetables to market once the winter harvest is underway.  On a recent Saturday, Manny was offering squash, eggplant, green pepper, cucumbers, green beans, avocados, and pablano peppers. He also had some “imports”—Fuji apples from Washington, sweet potatoes and red potatoes from North Carolina—but was careful to point out the origin of those items to customers.

At the Alderman Farms organic produce booth, owner Jimmy Alderman was pleased with the variety he could offer.

“Usually around Thanksgiving, all the crops are coming in here in Florida. So right now we’ve got just about everything, really—all the varieties of tomatoes, eggplant, squash—and for the next four to five weeks we’ll have fall corn,” he said. “It’s bi-colored organic sweet corn, grown right here in Palm Beach County.”

Meanwhile, Manny at Thomas Produce expects to have 17 different kinds of tomatoes eventually, including the heirloom varieties that his wife Cindy is growing in pots right now at Thomas Produce headquarters off Clint Moore Road west of Boca Raton.

The Delray GreenMarket has several other produce vendors, including Green Cay Farms and Volker Farms. Our newest addition, Hornbuckle Family Farm, specializes in citrus fruits, and they’ll have fresh squeezed juice for sale by the quart starting this weekend.

Just think: we’ve already been the envy of much of the U.S., enjoying fresh-picked local vegetables in November. And it’s only going to get better!

Five Tips for Healthful Holiday Eating

By Paula Detwiller

 

Ever notice how the days between Thanksgiving and Christmas are packed with activities that seem to conspire against healthy eating?  Between the Christmas goodies, the holiday parties, and rushing around to get things done, we tend to put nutrition on the back burner.

Maybe that’s why November is Good Nutrition Month—to remind us that our bodies need good fuel to keep running strong.

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Here are 5 tips for staying healthy through the holiday season:

  1. Limit your sugar intake. Yes, it’s easier said than done. But if you remind yourself of all the bad things associated with sugar—diabetes, weight gain, tooth decay, and even immune system suppression, you may find the willpower to resist the cakes, pies, and cookies.
  2. Remember your B’s. End-of-year holidays have a way of stressing us out, from the overcrowded shopping mall to the overbearing relatives. Bolster your nervous system and keep stress at bay by eating foods high in B vitamins, including legumes, oatmeal, eggs, flax seeds, brown rice, nuts, asparagus, leafy greens, cauliflower, potatoes, broccoli, and oranges. (Hint: you’ll find many of these at the Delray GreenMarket!)
  3. Be kind to your gut.  Eating a high-fiber diet of vegetables, fruit, whole grains, beans and nuts keeps you regular. But did you know that it also feeds your “gut flora,” the beneficial microorganisms that live in our digestive tracts? Thriving gut flora is associated with disease prevention in more and more nutritional studies. So as you plan your holiday meals, be sure to include plenty of dietary fiber.
  4. Avoid colds and flu. Germs travel far and wide during the holidays, and get spread around at parties and get-togethers. Protect yourself by washing your hands frequently and eating foods rich in Vitamin C.  Excellent sources include bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, pineapple, and papaya (which provides a whopping 313 percent of the daily recommended value of Vitamin C).
  5. Go easy on the alcohol. A little holiday cheer can lighten your mood, but too many holiday cocktails can leave you disoriented, dehydrated and depleted of essential vitamins and minerals. If you drink, remember to eat food at the same time—complex carbohydrates and protein sources are best—and for the health and safety of everyone, never drink and drive.

AK Caribbean Nursery: A gardener’s hobby-turned-business

By Paula Detwiller

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The Delray GreenMarket is a little bit greener this season, thanks to a new vendor selling tropical fruit trees.  Dozens of leafy, waist-high saplings are unloaded from a trailer each Saturday morning and displayed at the booth of Aldyth Konter and her husband Hans.

Aldyth is the “AK” in AK Caribbean Nursery, a family-run business operating out of the Konter’s fruitful backyard in The Acreage.

“I’m from Jamaica,” Aldyth said. “I was just trying to grow a little of my homeland, and it turned into a business.”

Searching for a sapodilla tree? You’ve come to the right place. How about the exotic guanabana from Brazil? AK Caribbean Nursery has that, too. The Konters sell more than 20 different varieties of tropical fruit trees at the GreenMarket, from the more common mango and avocado to the more rare cherry of the Rio Grande and jaboticaba.

The plants range in price from $10 to more than $100, depending on the pot size.

Aldyth is the one with the green thumb; she started gardening at her mother’s knee. Hans, who is originally from Germany, drives the trailer and helps out. The two met when Hans enlisted in the Peace Corps as a young man and the German government assigned him to Jamaica. He has many stories to tell.

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“In Jamaica, I used to make wine out of aloe vera! My biggest customer was the South Korean Embassy. They tried it and loved it. And that was 27 years ago,” Hans said.

Inside the AK Caribbean Nursery booth, Aldyth and

Hans keep a three-ring binder with photos and information about the many species they sell. They are constantly dispensing tips and advice to fruit-tree growers.

“We do more teaching than selling,” Aldyth laughed. “If we were to make money on what we tell people, we would be rich! But they ask a lot of questions and we have a lot of books and knowledge to share.”

Costumes, Candy and Crafts: Halloween Fun for Kids in Downtown Delray

By Paula Detwiller

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If you have kids, mark your calendar for this Saturday, October 26. It’s the official downtown Delray Beach kickoff to Halloween!

The fun begins at 9 a.m. with the opening of the Delray GreenMarket at the Old School Square Park. The Delray Beach Center for the Arts will have a Halloween craft for kids at the Budding Artists booth all day.

Trick-or-treating begins at 11 a.m. at the GreenMarket and along Atlantic Avenue, followed by the annual children’s Halloween Parade at 1 p.m. Kids will line up for the parade at Old School Square—adjacent to the GreenMarket—and proceed east on Atlantic Avenue to Veterans Park. As a special treat, all parade participants will get free samples of Blue Bell ice cream.

Immediately following the Halloween Parade, all children are invited to join the City at Kidsfest, a free family event at Veterans Park.  Look for live entertainment, food vendors, a bounce house and a “make-and-take” craft area. Kidsfest will last until 4:00 pm.

So why not make a day of it?  Bring your little vampires, ballerinas and pirates to downtown Delray this Saturday and join us at the GreenMarket while you’re here. Hint: the GreenMarket is a great place for a healthy breakfast or lunch!

New at the GreenMarket this Season: Kids Art Activities!

By Paula Detwiller

What makes the Delray GreenMarket fun for kids? Let’s see: there’s live music, playground equipment, tasty things to eat…and starting this season, a place to work on a different craft project each week.

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Look out for the new “Budding Artists” booth, presented by the Delray Beach Center for the Arts at Old School Square, which is located next door to the GreenMarket site. Inside the 10’ by 15’ booth, kids of all ages will be able to spend time creating works of art from recycled and natural materials.

 

“For a participation fee of three dollars, parents can bring their children to be involved in a meaningful craft,” said Leanne Griffith, Community Outreach and Volunteer Coordinator for the Center for the Arts. “We’ll be talking to the kids about issues relevant to organic eating, and offer crafts in conjunction with that. A craft idea could be printmaking with vegetables—making stamps out of potatoes. It might be painting one week, sculpting the next. And on Chili Cookoff day, I’m thinking a bean activity. Maybe bean mosaics?”

 

An art teacher from the Center for the Arts will be leading the craft making, with teenaged volunteers from Atlantic High School helping out. Budding artists will sit at a shaded work table. Smocks will be provided, and kids can stay for as long as they want—with parental supervision, of course.

 

“Many kids these days only get one hour of art per week at their school,” said Griffith. “My hope is that the Budding Artists booth will give kids a chance to express themselves creatively in an outdoor, non-restricted environment.”

 

The booth will also provide information about upcoming Center for the Arts activities, such as classes, exhibits, shows, field trips, and concerts.

 

“We’re building our children’s programs here at the Center for the Arts, and we just thought this would be a lovely, very natural outreach,” Griffith said.

The Delray GreenMarket opens its eighteenth season on Saturday, October 19. Be sure to mark your calendar!

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