Harbingers of spring tend to be daffodils and blooming forsythia or sweet birdsong at dawn, but in Port Townsend, we go a step further and celebrate the season with the opening of our Farmers Market.

Where else can you enjoy a goat parade with kids—both four-legged and two—as they wend their way along Taylor Street in Uptown Port Townsend through an array of farmers, bakers, crafters, shellfish growers, winemakers, cidermakers and more?

It all begins on Saturday, April 5th, promptly at 9 a.m. as 50 vendors spring forward into the freshness of the season with a wide array of products for your enjoyment. For more info about the market, go to: www.jeffersoncountyfarmersmarket.org.

goats-farmers-market-by-steve-mullensky

New vendors at the market

The market has a bumper crop of new vendors this year. Port Townsend’s own Propolis will be selling and sampling their seasonal herbal ales at the market. Victor and Olga Paz, of Olgita’s, will be selling handmade tortillas, salsas and pupusas (Latin American style stuffed tortillas—meat, cheese, bean or all three). Meredith Hotchkiss of Bread and Honey Bakery will be making her debut at the market with pies and cakes and pastries and other sweet things. Cherepashka Candle Company is bringing their handmade, all natural soy and coconut wax candles scented with pure essential oils. Blyn’s new Gathering Ground Farm will bring a bounty of mixed vegetables, berries and flowers, all cultivated with horse power. As in actual horses. And Olympic Onion will be selling their Sequim-grown dried green onion powders.

Changing it up this season

Dabob Kabobs, the market’s maker of local meats on a stick is changing up their menu this year to include stir fries that utilize even more fresh market produce. Virginie Borque’s award winning one woman Lullaby Wines will be selling a variety of handmade macaroons to be eaten and paired with samples of her wines. Virginie hails from Provence originally, and everything she makes honors and expands on her French upbringing.

Midori Farm has moved. The formerly Port Townsend based farm has relocated to the greener pastures of Quilcene, on acreage that lies between longtime market vendors Serendipity Farm and Wildwood Farm. Last year, Dharma Ridge relocated to Quilcene to take over the large and fertile Bolton Farm, and Colinwood farm’s Jesse Hopkins has purchased and planted on the farmland next to Midori. The warmer climate and cheaper land is leading to a new farming renaissance in the remaining fields of the former timber town.

Go green—cycle to the market

Take a cue from Rick Altman, owner of Cape Cleare Salmon, and ride your bike to the market. He’s an inspiration, encouraging people to cycle more. Read their bicycling story:

We have moved over 100, 000 pounds of salmon by pedal power, hauling up to 1/8 of a ton as much as 20-mile round trips. Ninety five percent of the salmon we sell locally is delivered by bicycle. Our dedicated cyclists: Rick, Heidi and Pam, pedal this precious cargo in rain, snow and shine.

The salmon is packed in insulated boxes, strapped to our custom-fabricated trailer made from an aluminum ladder, and delivered with the same care and attention that we bring to everything we do.

We believe in bicycles as a viable alternative to motorized vehicles. We’d like to see bicycles used more often in business and commerce.

See you at the market on two wheels!

From farm to market to table—a day in the life of Chef Laurette

See how Chef Laurette Feit finds fresh, seasonal ingredients to create local delicacies for her guests at Sweet Laurette Bistro.

2014-victorian-fest-posterLive the Victorian life for a weekend in historic Port Townsend, March 21-23, 2014, and enjoy everything the Victorian Festival has to offer.

When thinking of Port Townsend’s early days, images of shipping and lumber, rough streets and genteel houses spring to mind, but the U.S. Army established Fort Townsend in 1856. The 18th Annual Victorian Festival looks at how the military shaped culture during those volatile decades of expansion, civil war, and economic tumult.

Here’s a quick glimpse of activities to participate in over the weekend, but for more details and to purchase your ticket, go to www.VictorianFestival.org.

Start with a Victorian Pub Crawl on Friday night, featuring sea shanties, saloons, “shanghai tunnels,” and fine vintage cocktails throughout a staggering selection of Port Townsends (in)famous watering holes.

Saturday is filled with fascinating events and presentations you won’t want to miss. Manliness in the Morning begins at 11:30 am, a very civilized hour for any gentleman. Learn about Victorian Bicycles or how the Military Influenced Women’s Fashions, as well as Steamboat Rides departing from Point Hudson Marina, all at 12:30 pm. At 2:30 pm, enjoy a Fencing Demonstration or discover the secrets behind Victorian Corsets. A perennial favorite of the festival is the Victorian Fashion Show at 4 pm and the Victorian Ball from 7-11 pm. Many more presentations and activities are offered throughout the weekend, so be sure to check out the full schedule at www.VictorianFestival.org.

walking-tour-photo-by-kevin-mason

Enjoy a Victorian Walking Tour (photo by Kevin Mason)

Sunday morning, take the Insiders’ Historic Building Tour and see for yourself the incredible, authentic buildings of this Victorian Seaport. Join Port Townsend’s Main Street Program [link to Main St page] for the Tour—your ticket inside four of Port Townsend’s cornerstones. Tour these splendid edifices with docents who can offer the inside scoop on when and why, who and how.

It’s a weekend of fun and history, you won’t want to miss.

Hastings Building c.1889

Hastings Building c.1889

The Port Townsend Main Street Program is coordinating the “Insider’s Historic Building Tours”—with Downtown and Uptown Tours on Sunday, March 23, 2014 during the Victorian Festival. The tours reveal intriguing stories from the past and visions for the future. Knowledgeable guides will lead the tours. Tickets are on sale now for $10 each from the Port Townsend Victorian Festival’s website at www.vicfest.org.

DOWNTOWN TOUR FROM 11 AM TO 12:45 PM

The Fowler Building (aka The Leader Building) 226 Adams Street

  • Capt. Enoch S. Fowler, a skipper and early Port Townsend entrepreneur, built this two-story building from sandstone quarried from Marrowstone Island in 1874.
  • The Leader is celebrating its125 anniversary this year.
  • Tour Leader: Scott Wilson, Publisher of the Port Townsend & Jefferson County Leader

The Mount Baker Block Building 1890  211 Taylor Street

  • Get a first-hand look at Port Townsend’s ”shanghai tunnels” in an 1890 building erected by Port Townsend’s first mayor.
  • Tour Leader: Mari Mullen, Executive Director of the Port Townsend Main Street Program.

The Eisenbeis Building, 1889–2013 830 Water Street.

  • Built in 1889 by Port Townsend’s first mayor, Charles Eisenbeis, this historic building, constructed with Port Townsend bricks, has been completely renovated into a mixed-use building.
  • Tour Leader: Michelle Sandoval, Windermere Real Estate

The Hastings Building 1889 833-839 Water Street

  • Climb the stairs to the past at the landmark Hastings Building and get a rare look at a grand historic building frozen in time, but poised for an exciting transformation.
  • Tour Leader: Heather Dudley Nollette, Project Manager for the Hastings Building (and descendent of Lucinda & Loren B. Hastings, the original building owners).
  • Please note: These historic buildings are accessed by steep stairways.  The Eisenbeis Building and the Mount Baker Block are ADA Accessible on the upper floors via elevator.

UPTOWN TOUR FROM 1 PM TO 3 PM

Meet Us At The Bell Tower—At The Top Of Haller Stairs at Tyler/Jefferson Streets

The Bell Tower 1890– near the top of the Haller Fountain Stairs (Tyler/Jefferson)

  • Hear about the history of Uptown and how it evolved and will be able to go inside the Bell Tower’s main floor.
  • Tour Leader: Bill Tennent, Director, The Jefferson County Historical Society

The Gallus Rutz Building Built 1889 1044 Lawrence Street

  • Built in 1889 by Dr. Gallus Rutz.
  • The tour includes a sneak peak at “Grandma Lily’s Apartment” upstairs, decorated with nostalgic flair.
  • Tour Leader: Building Owner Helen Gunn

The Barthrop House (aka The Quimper Inn Bed & Breakfast)

  • 1306 Franklin
  • It was built by Captain Henry Morgan in 1888 and is now the home of The Quimper Inn.
  • Tour Leaders: Owners Sue and Ron Ramage
  • Please note: Access to the upper floors of these historic buildings include stairs.

Events subject to change.