Tradition, Nutrition, & Community: The Historic South Side Farmer’s Market
Jul02

Tradition, Nutrition, & Community: The Historic South Side Farmer’s Market

  Nestled along a quiet residential street in downtown Fort Wayne, an unassuming barn-like structure comes to life once per week with the vibrant sights, sounds, and smells of one of Fort Wayne’s oldest community staples. The Historic South Side Farmers Market lives up to its name―the weekly market been an agricultural and commercial pillar of Fort Wayne for nearly a century. Located on 3300 Warsaw Street, it hosts dozens of vendors every Saturday between Easter and mid-December from 7 AM to 1 PM. Strolling through the two long wings of the market’s H-shaped building, you’ll find a bit of everything: vendors on the west side offer local produce, hormone-free meat, eggs, honey, preserves, baked goods, herbs, and more. The east side houses a flea market with antiques, handcrafts, books, and jewelry. South Side Farmers Market has been a Saturday morning tradition for patrons and vendors since 1926, and continues to draw crowds who resonate with the quality food, community engagement, and local business that it fosters. In addition to its regular fare, the South Side Farmers Market also has a variety of seasonal offerings and special events throughout the year. Earlier this year, Indiana State Representative Phil GiaQuinta partnered with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to give away free tree seedlings to South Side Farmers Market patrons. During my recent visit to the market, I noticed a beautiful array of flowers and plants available for the summer months. Perfect for front porches like mine that desperately need a refreshing pop of color as the weather warms up! Ann DeGrandchamp, Secretary of the Allen County Ag. Producers, has witnessed the long history of South Side Farmers Market firsthand. Her grandfather, Frederick J. Schlup, was an Aboite Township farmer who helped to organize and build the market 92 years ago. South Side Farmers Market played a central role in future generations of DeGrandchamp’s family, as her father Richard T. Schlup continued to be closely involved with the South Side Farmers Market as he pursued the family produce business. With such an extensive track record of family involvement, DeGrandchamp considers the market to be “in her blood,” and still participates as a board member and as a vendor with her husband Jack and son Daryl. South Side Farmers Market holds a special place in her heart, just as it does for many of its regular patrons. “I’m pretty attached to the market,” says DeGrandchamp. “I’m pretty attached to healthy eating too. While there is a lot to enjoy about the market, I’d have to say my favorite aspect is the opportunity to sell―and buy myself―the various fresh produce that is...

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