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October 22, 2009 | Visit the Farmers Market online at | Subscribe to Fresh Picks

Market News for This Saturday, October 24

Grinning and Umbrellaing It
How about we just avoid dwelling on how forsaken the weather was last week and skip right to what the Farmers Market has planned for this Saturday? Which, it should be stressed (since the forecast is highly dicey again), is the next-to-last Market of the whole entire season. As in only two more, people, so this is no time to lose interest, lounge about the house, and forego the vendors who work so hard to bring memorable stuff to Lansdowne every week. Plus, this Saturday is the combo Fall Festival and Community Day, providing even more reasons to bundle up, throw on an anorak, and head over to what has to be your all-time favorite parking lot by now (really, what lot can compete?). We've already started rounding up even more tents than usual so everyone can stay dryish.

For the kids, the Market is again featuring pumpkin decorating, always a good time. Buy a pumpkin from us for a reduced price and decorate it on site with markers and stickers and googly eyes and antennae (aka pipe cleaners). Grownups have seemed envious of this opportunity, so this year Bonnie is offering to teach you flower arranging in pumpkins. You get the small pumpkin, the flora, and Bonnie's help, all for one low price. All ages are invited to guess how many pieces of candy, dog treats, or acorns are in our three mystery containers. Closest guess takes the whole jar (plus we'll give you a big bag of candy if you win the acorns).

The Sweet Endings Dessert Contest has two components this year — the competition among the entered desserts (sure to be heated), and the silent auction among shoppers to purchase the desserts (also quite hot). Here's how it works, if you're entering the contest (and we really hope you are), have your dessert, your entry form, and your $5 entry fee to the Market Manager tent by 10:00. As soon as desserts start arriving, shoppers are invited to begin the bidding, which will be done on paper, with all desserts starting at $5 (that's for the entry minus the small piece the judges sample). You write down what you're willing to pay for it. Someone willing to pay more can then outbid you by writing down a higher bid. You'll be able to see this, so you can then up the bid if you wish. Bidding continues in this way, in one-dollar increments, until the judging starts at noon. At that point, we collect the bids, announce who the winning bidder is for each dessert and await the judging. If you were high bidder on the dessert that judges deem the best, you get it for free and the person who made the winning dessert gets half the total entry fees, a true win-win (you get a free dessert and the creator gets a cash prize). If the dessert you bid on doesn't win, you still buy it and we give the money to a community food pantry, so it's still a win-win (you eat, they eat). If anything about this isn't clear, we'll be glad to go over it on Saturday. Until then, just get your dessert made, making sure to include two Market items, and plan on being there by 10:00 am. Judges for this year's contest are (drum roll, please) . . . Mayor Jayne Young (this might be her favorite mayoral responsibility), Fruitwood Farms' proprietor Mike Nelson, Sycamore chef Meg Votta, and Christine Carpenter again (one of only two shoppers to express interest, and lucky Christine won the toss).

Sense of Community
On the other side of the parking lot is the season's final Community Day. The list of participants indicates that this is going to be a great time to stock up on popular items that have made only fleeting appearances at the Market in the past. Betsy Burke will have her delicious fruit syrups and jams, and Norma Bartram will be there with her homegrown and homemade bread and butter pickles, green tomato relish, and blackberry jelly, plus fudge and chocolate-dipped candies. Maria Atanacio of From Me, To You Soaps will have her natural body products, lotions, and soaps on hand as well. All of these make great little gifts, and this may be your only chance to get these items before the holidays. Other new participants include Fit2Inspire, personal and group fitness training; The Sewing Doctor, who will refashion and refit old garments; and representatives from Congressman Joe Sestak's office, among others. Several participants are returning Community Dayers, there to give you another chance to familiarize yourself with their offerings, from a chiropractor to borough organizations. If it's raining, they'll be under tents and they'll let you come under too, so don't be shy — they want to meet you.

Despite our best intentions, we have been remiss about collecting food contributions throughout the season to restock the community food bank. Please take a look through your pantry and bring along some of the following this Saturday or next: peanut butter, jelly, cereal, pancake mix, syrup, pasta, sauce, rice, beans, stuffing mix, gravy, soup, dry milk, sugar. Just drop your donations at the Market Manager tent, and we'll thank you with a Market Buck. All the money raised during the dessert contest and the silent auction of the contest entries will also be given to the food bank.

Not much brings a community together more happily than a successful sports team, and the Phillies are putting a lot of smiles on a lot of faces and starting plenty of neighborly "How 'bout them Phils! conversations. The official stance of the Lansdowne Farmers Market on the MLB postseason is "Go Phillies!" Stop by the Manager tent if you want to talk baseball; that's the kind of service we provide.

Next Week, aka Last Week
Happily, the final 2009 Lansdowne Farmers Market falls on Halloween, so by all means, don't come as you are. Any costume, gown, cape, wig, crazy glasses, buck teeth, horns, tail, etc, will do — just do something to get in the spirit of the day, which is about being something or someone other than your daily self. We'll have treats at the Market Manager tent for costumed trick-or-treaters under age 18, as will several vendors. And if you're a grownup who does it up good costume-wise, we'll give you a Market Buck for your efforts.

Show off your mad creative skills by bringing a jack-o-lantern you've carved at home to the Market that last Saturday by 10:00 am. Shoppers will vote on their favorites all day, and we'll announce the winner at 12:45. All will be much admired and cooed over, and the creator of the one with the most votes gets $15 in Market Bucks, plus the honor of having their jack-o-lantern displayed that Halloween night and Sunday morning at Sycamore, if they choose. Contestants can take home their jack-o-lanterns at the end of the Market day. (Note that there are no rules against pandering to the crowd by carving Phillies-related designs...)

And in celebration and honor of Veteran's Day, for the final Market on October 31, Schober Orchards will be having a special giveaway for veterans. Look for signs with more details this week, and be sure to come back next if you're a vet to get a generous thank-you from this family-owned orchard.

The Best, Jerry, the Best
Doncha know that broccoli did make it to last week's Market after all. Thus, we are a bit late sharing the recipe for The Best Broccoli You'll Ever Eat, which it turns out is supposed to be called The Best Broccoli of Your Life. Whatever, close enough. Instead of running an actual recipe, here and here are links to two websites that ran broccoli pieces so named. You can speed things along by heading straight to that second link, which is a tweaking of the recipe in the first link, which is in fact a tweaking of a recipe by Inga Garten, aka The Barefoot Contessa. The dish is a simple combination of roasted broccoli, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice and zest, salt, pepper, plus add-ons like pine nuts, parmesan, or herbs. We went for the pine nuts, no parm or herbs, oversalted the whole thing, and it was still the best broccoli we ever ate. Or of our life. Whatever. Try it, tweak it, totally devour it.

(We just made that word up. Like it? You saw it here first.) Over the next few days, a couple of things are happening that you'll want to check out if you're working toward being better to the planet. First, this Saturday, October 24, from 9:00 am to noon is Hoffman Park Stream and Habitat Restoration Day. You are invited to come to the park to learn about native plants and the importance of stream buffer as well as to lend a hand installing deer protection for native plants, removing invasive vines, and helping to restore the Darby Creek and adjacent streamside buffer. (This restoration project is made possible through the Pennsylvania Growing Greener Program.) You should dress appropriately, in long sleeves and long pants, and bring work gloves and loppers, if you have them, though you can borrow tools and gloves there if you want to help and lack these items. If it rains, come on Sunday the 25th instead. Meet at the park pavilion on Scottdale road at 9:00 am. Questions? Call the borough: 610-284-1493.

Then, at 7:00 pm next Tuesday evening, October 27, there's a rain barrel workshop in the cafeteria at Penn Wood High School, 100 Green Avenue, Lansdowne. This informative session will cover the benefits of having a rain barrel at your home as well as how to buy or build, install, and use a rain barrel. At the end of the program, 25 new 55-gallon rain barrels will be given away! Wow, we're so there! Everyone is welcome to attend the workshop, but to qualify to win a free rain barrel, you must live in Darby, Lansdowne, East Lansdowne, Yeadon, or Upper Darby. Now for the credits. The workshop is sponsored by American Rivers, the Community Action Agency of Delaware County, Inc., and the Delaware County Planning Department, in cooperation with the Darby Creek Valley Association and the Delaware County Conservation District, with generous support from the Claneil Foundation.

Finally, it's leaf pickup time at last! Unlike most towns, tree-proud Lansdowne has a very generous and labor-saving policy of not requiring that leaves be bagged to be collected. You need only to rake them into the street, close to the curb, and refrain from parking on them so they can be gathered according to this schedule (printable copy including route map here). We'll also have some black-and-white copies of this schedule available at the Market. It bears repeating: don't park on the leaves at the curb.

Folky and Bunny and Rocky
Tonight, October 22, Lansdowne's esteemed Folk Club serves up Zoe Mulford, whose banjo (we love banjo!) and guitar-driven music has won accolades from near and far. Described as both powerful and funny, Mulford's performance will be preceded by that of guest Nik Everett, a Delaware musician who's getting bigger by the day. The show's at 7:30 at the Twentieth Century Club, 84 S. Lansdowne Avenue. Tickets are $18 at the door.

This weekend is your last chance to catch Bunnicula, by all accounts another fine staging by Celebration Theater that is sadly underattended. Get up, shake yourself off, and get to the Twentieth Century Club by 7:30 pm this Friday or Saturday or 2:00 pm this Sunday. We've said it before and we'll say it again: getting yourself out the door might be tough, but you'll be glad you made the effort.

Just when you thought it was safe to go to the movies without being rained on or hit with toast, The Rocky Horror Picture Show is coming to Cinema 16:9. It will run between October 26 and the 31st, with a midnight show (of course midnight!) on Halloween. If you've never experienced Rocky Horror in a theater, you haven't lived, or at least haven't lived through something really weird happening in a movie theater. Tickets are $10 and for another tenner, the Cinema will provide an audience participation kit filled with everything you need to interact with the film. But if you're under 17 years old, bring an adult because this one is rated R (for "retro"?). Ensure yourself a seat by buying your ticket now. (For the 8:00 pm shows on October 26 and 27, the audience participation kits will be sold before the show as a fundraiser for the GLFL.)

MAPThe Lansdowne Farmers Market takes place every Saturday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm in the parking lot next to 28 North Lansdowne Avenue, rain or shine.

Visit our sister market, the Oakmont Farmers Market, Wednesday afternoons in Havertown for more local produce, bread, meat, and other products.

Featured This Week

Artist of the Week: Charlotte Hummel makes stretchy, drapey, kinda sexy scarves called Mobis that she offers for sale only once in a great while. This is your chance, people. Come and get em while they're available because they may not be ever again. She seems to be getting serious about ceasing production, so don't say you weren't warned. Now or never. Really. She means it.

Musician of the Week: Suzie Brown looks great in an acoustic guitar, got nice coverage recently in the Philadelphia Inquirer, and has opened for Lyle Lovett. She's also a cardiologist, so just this once you can eat whatever you want at the Market; we have medical help on site.

Blog: Soggy saga, vendor love, nostalgia.

Check out what's coming in the weeks ahead, music- and art-wise, by visiting our continually updated on-line schedule.


Upcoming Local Events

Movies at Cinema 16:9
October 22 to 29, various times; $5 to $10
Anvil: The Story of Anvil; Schlocktoberfest horror films; The Rocky Horror Picture Show
Free cartoons, Saturday 11:00 am to 1:00 pm
35 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne

Zoe Mulford with guest Nik Everett at the Lansdowne Folk Club
Thursday, October 22, 7:30 pm; $15 to $18
Twentieth Century Club, 84 S. Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne or 610-622-7250

Bunnicula: The Musical at Celebration Theater
Fri., Sat., Sun., October 23 to 25; $10 to $15
Twentieth Century Club, 84 S. Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne; 610-259-1800

Lansdowne Games Day at The Garden Church
Saturday, October 24, 11:15 am to 9:00 pm; Free
82 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne

8 Major Causes of Disease Lecture at Life More Abundant
Sunday October 25, 3:00 pm; Free
25 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne

Minas at Picanha Brazilian Grill
Friday, October 30, 7:00 pm; $21.99 includes meal
6501 Castor Avenue, Philadelphia

Annual GLFL Halloween Costume Bash at the Twentieth Century Club
Saturday, October 31, 7:30 pm; $10, BYOB
84 S. Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne

St Philomena's happy hour fundraiser at Casey's
Friday, November 6, 5:00 pm; $30
812 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Drexel Hill
Contact Lori Giosa at 610-394-6562

Holiday Bazaar at The Garden Church
Saturday, November 7, 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
82 N. Lansdowne Avenue; 610-623-1645

Fifth Anniversary Gala for Animal Friends of Lansdowne
Saturday, November 7, 6:00 pm; $48 per person
The Restaurant School, 4207 Walnut Street, Philadelphia

Live Art Auction at the First Presbyterian Church of Lansdowne
Saturday, November 7, 7:00 pm; $10
Lansdowne and Greenwood Avenues, Lansdowne
610-259-5526 or 484-463-8338

Autumn Concert of the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra
Sunday, November 8, 3:00 pm; $5 to $15
Upper Darby Performing Arts Center, Upper Darby High School

Acoustic Eidolon at Concerts at the Beach House
Wednesday, November 11, 7:30 pm; $15, BYOB or 610-626-0012

Minas CD Release Party at World Cafe Live
Monday, November 16, 7:30 pm; $25 to $30
3025 Walnut St., Philadelphia; 215-222-1400

Annual Fall Spaghetti Dinner sponsored by Lansdowne Boy Scout Troop 63
Saturday, November 21, 4:00 to 7:00 pm
$5 for children (12 & under); $7 for adults
The First Presbyterian Church, Lansdowne and Greenwood Avenues, Lansdowne

Click for a complete listing of upcoming local events.

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