Saturday, September 04, 2010

4MRMarket Report: Busy as a Bicycling Bee Edition

Bee on a Bike in a Race by EHPlesser
As the Four Mile Run Farmers & Artisans Market enters into its 3rd month of operation, the one thing we've learned to expect is that each market day will be full of surprises.

Starting tomorrow, Sunday September 5th, the new surprise addition to 4MRMarket will be VéloCity. A bicycling cooperative established earlier this year in Old Town, VéloCity's mission is "to encourage a vibrant and inclusive cycling community by providing a non-profit, volunteer operated, do-it-yourself workshop for building and maintaining bicycles along with training, rides, and events to empower interaction, skills, fun, and freedom." VéloCity will be on hand with bike stands and tools to empower riders with DIY bike repairs on a bi-weekly basis, showing off 4MR Park as the hive of bicycling activity it is.

Two weeks ago we were surprised to learn that the Four Mile Run is home to very productive honey bees. Nearby backyard aviaries produce honey at almost 10 times the state average. Last week some of that honey found its way into the deliciously artisanal chocolates produced by Krishon Chocolates and sold at 4MRMarket just 1000 feet from the hives it came from. What won't surprise us is if some of the blue-ribbon-award-winning 4MR honey shows up in other market products soon.

Zelda's NOVA Soul continues to churn out new and interesting salad creations that sell out too quickly for some (well, me). And MT's Pastries continues to invent new recipes, now with a complete line of gluten and sugar free confections to compliment the world's best brownie and bread pudding muffin. (All best enjoyed with St Elmo's coffee in the Market Lounge).

The farm fresh beef from Stiffler Farm has garnered rave reviews with market goers heralding the great cuts of meat they produce. Northern Lights Seafood has been known to bring folks across town for their salmon. And Pleitez and Shlagel Farms bring the best produce around. Here's what a customer wrote about last Sunday's market after having unsuccessfully trying to get there for weeks,
"I loved the market. The tomatoes I bought were the best tomatoes I have had for about 10 years. They were absolutely delicious. Everything else was good as well."
Elsewhere, the reviews are coming in on services like Yelp.

Starting a new enterprise is daunting (especially one funded out of pocket with no hope of anything above 0% return), but the support has been overwhelming...and much appreciated.

There are still hopes to grow...and room to make it happen. Stayed tuned. 4MRMarket has wings. More surprises to come!


The Four Mile Run Farmers and Artisans Market (Alexandria, Virginia 22305) brings fresh, nutritious food to people of all income levels, provide an opportunity for local artisans and producers of goods to bring their wares to market, strive to reflect the diversity of the community, and improve the quality of life for Arlandria residents and visitors.  It is part of an overall vision to expand and improve Four Mile Run park and the surrounding neighborhood.

4MRMarket is open every Sunday from 8am until 1pm from April through October in Four Mile Run Park at 4109 Mt Vernon Avenue, Alexandria 22305

For more info see:

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