Residents of the Mid-Hudson Valley, in Orange and Ulster Counties particularly, will be enjoying a growing roster of weekend farmers’ markets from now until November. Locally grown, high-quality fruits and vegetables are to be found in towns ranging from Cornwall, Marlboro and Newburgh to Wallkill and Warwick. Hand-crafted specialties such as maple syrups, baked goods and farm-fresh cheeses are also available at these rustic markets. In addition to the seasonal “pop-up” weekend markets, our region is home to many well-known full-time farms, many of which supply New York City chefs with top-quality fare.
Locust Grove Fruit Farm and Hepworth Farms, both in Milton, for example, are fixtures at New York City’s Union Square Green Market. Well-established farm stands such as Overlook Farm Market in Middlehope and Caradonna Farms in Marlboro are directly on Route 9W and have attracted fruit-lovers for generations. Fifty years ago, a pleasurable Sunday drive north through 9W’s farm country – from Newburgh to New Paltz, basically was a popular pastime for locals and featured dozens of small roadside stands. Today, the growing focus on agritourism and locally grown, high-quality, organic food has once again made our local farmers popular attractions! Take advantage of the region’s harvest and shop at your local farm market this season – some offer picnic grounds, and attractions such as petting zoos and hayrides.