By Julia Howard, Market Administrator
As Saratoga-area children anticipate their last day of school, the first question on many parents’ minds is “what are we going to do all summer?” The Saratoga Farmers’ Market’s Power of Produce Club offers children and families a free and easy answer to that question.
Power of Produce Club (also known as POP Club) is a 12-week program that begins next Wednesday, June 27, and runs through early September. It takes place each Wednesday, 3-6 p.m. at the farmers’ market, and gives both children and their parents a chance to learn about local foods and farming in a hands-on way.
POP Club is open to children of all ages and abilities. Each time participants visit the Wednesday market, they will receive a $2 POP coin that can be used to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables from a farmer of their choice. The coins are geared towards children between the ages of 5 and 12. In addition, children will receive a stamp on a POP passport. After receiving four stamps, children will be eligible for a prize.
The goal of the project is to help children see how food and farming are intrinsically connected to strengthening community ties. By buying produce from our vendors, children form what might turn into lifelong relationships with local farmers. At the same time, children gain basic money skills and participate in weekly activities that offer a sense of how to enjoy local produce when it is at its finest.
Power of Produce Club is made possible by support from The Christopher Dailey Foundation and the Rotary Club of Saratoga Springs. In addition, local activities are being organized by numerous community partners like The Children’s Museum of Saratoga, Cornell Cooperative Extension master gardeners and food and nutrition educators, and several of our local farmers.
The first event takes place next Wednesday and will feature live music by the Zucchini Brothers, balloon twisting by Mr. Twisty, an activity on healthy snacking, and more free activities. At POP Club, children will have an opportunity to make a fruit and yogurt cone, using local ingredients.
To join us, look for the green POP Club tent at the Wednesday market, across from the market information booth.
The Saratoga Farmers’ Market is 3-6 p.m. Wednesdays and 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays at High Rock Park. Find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and check us out on the FreshFoodNY app. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for volunteer opportunities.