Wisconsin March 13, 2017
The Most Massive Farmers Market In Wisconsin Is A Must Visit
Right here in our state capital we are lucky enough to have one of the biggest farmers markets in the country featuring vendors whose quality has been nationally recognized. Since long before there was any sort of “movement” about the food we eat, the folks in and around Madison have been meeting farmers face-to-face and purchasing some of the freshest produce, cheese, fish and meat that can be found anywhere.
With its proximity to both a city population and the urban farms, Madison is the perfect location for this giant market and you have to make plans to visit this year!
Stretching around all four sides of Madison's Capitol Square, the Dane County Farmer's Market (DCFM) is reported to be the largest producer-only farmers market in the country.
All items are produced by the members behind the tables. No resale allowed!
The market takes place in the shadow of the State Capitol Building and brings in a mix of student and local shoppers, as well as those who make a day of visiting the market. The DCFM is perfectly located in Madison, close to the population but also near to the producers.
The DCFM consists of about 300 members and there's a five-year waiting list to be able to join.
On any given Saturday there are more than 160 vendors that line the streets to sell their wares.
In addition to the market, around the square you'll find arts and crafts vendors and street performers as well as food carts and trucks. Inside the Capitol you'll find nonprofit, political, and public information booths.
According to the DCFM, their producers regularly receive national and international recognition for the quality of their products.
Knowing where your food comes from and eating farm-to-table food are thought of as trendy food movements, but some say the local food movement was born at this market because of the "regulars": quality-conscious chefs who come by to shop for their staple products.
Come prepared to walk, and bring plenty of extra hands to carry your purchases. At the market you'll find everything from seasonal, farm-fresh vegetables to fresh cut herbs and flowers. In early spring, come buy starter plants to get your own garden going.
Stella's hot cheese bread is a staple of the DCFM and you'll smell it before you see it. The line is usually a pretty good indicator.
In addition to produce, you'll find locally-sourced bakery, cheese, fish, meat and more sold to you directly from the producers. Some of the best small-business products are only publicly sold at the market.
Definitely come to stock up your fridge, but also come to take in the sights and sounds of a Saturday in Madison as students mix with suburbanites and city folks mix with the farmers. The colors are bright and beautiful and if you're lucky, they'll let you take a sample.
It wouldn't be Wisconsin without plenty of cheese, so save your breakfast or lunch plans until after you've sampled your way around the square.
The market sets up around the square from April 15 - November 11 and is open from 6:15 am to 1:45 pm. They also run a Wednesday market on the 200 Block of MLK JR, Blvd.
In the winter, the market moves into Monona Terrace, and after the new year it's at the Madison Senior Center on Mifflin Street. No matter the season, you have no excuse not to visit!
Looking for more farmer’s markets around the state? Check out
These 17 Incredible Farmers Markets In Wisconsin Are A Must Visit