Are you on vacation? Everyone else is. Well, it seems that way anyway, based on out-of-office autoreplies, Facebook status updates, and the tumbleweeds that've been blowing through town. It's the dead center of summer and pushing 100 degrees to boot, so no wonder many of you have taken off for the shore, the mountains, the lake, the
cabin, the cottage, the whatever it is that makes you feel like you've gotten away. But if you're one of those left behind, going to the Lansdowne Farmers Market and taking advantage of the food, music, and company there is as good a way to take the edge off not being on vacation as we can think of.
The Market's vendors also need the occasional break. Last week was Bonnie's Wondergarden's annual absence from the lot, and the wailing and gnashing of teeth this caused could be heard two towns over. This Saturday, it's Provisions' turn to take some time off. Think back: there once was a time when you couldn't get a crepe or breakfast burrito made to order in the parking lot. Yes, it seems impossibly
cruel that we have been conditioned to expect this weekly pleasure only to have it denied when everyone else is on vacation and we're stuck here, but apparently that's the way the ball bounces. Shoppers will just have to make do with iced or hot coffee and tea (including cooling iced Moroccan mint tea this week), fresh baked muffins, scones, croissants, and tarts from the Regency, bread from Great Harvest, and the other LFM hot breakfast of choice, mushroom soup from John's MiniTreats. Hey, that's really pretty
good actually; what are we whining about? By the way, John is taking off August 13, so consider stocking up on his soups and chili over the next couple weeks in anticipation. To make it up to us in advance, this week he's making a batch of his cold peach soup, which must be tasted to be believed.
MyHouse won't have mini pies or quiches this Saturday because of problems getting the small pans, but they'll
be bringing peach, apple, and berry cobblers, plus big pies and three-packs of cookies (we can vouch for the peanut butter!), so you may not even miss those other little goodies.
Also on board for Saturday are Ridge Valley Farm -- your chance to stock up on maple syrup for those baked
beans we wrote about last week -- and Welcome Baby, with supplies to make your body feel better, whether or not you're expecting.
(And speaking of being left behind -- or things you may want to leave behind -- the borough has provided beautiful
new companion trash and recycling cans for the downtown area, with one set placed right outside the Farmers Market on Lansdowne Avenue. Thanks, borough!)
There seems to be some confusion about where a person in search of cheese can get it at the Lansdowne Farmers Market. Although it's likely that those who are confounded and upset about this issue do not read this newsletter or consult the website, we'll do our best to
clarify the cheese situation simply because we love cheese. When we open the fridge at home and say there's nothing to eat, what we mean is there's no cheese. We're sensitive to the negative impact a lack of cheese can have on one's day, so take heed and hearken to the cheese roll that is about to be called.
Harvest Local Foods has a nice variety of cheese for sale every week at the Market, from Claudio's fresh mozzarella (and it's tomato season!) to local cream cheese and flavored cheddar. Our two specialty cheese vendors appear on either the first or third Saturday of each month: Yellow Springs Farm was just at the Market last
week with their goat cheeses, and they'll be returning on August 20th (the third Saturday). Doe Run Dairy made their first Market appearance a few weeks ago with cow's milk cheese, organic vegetables, and eggs, and they'll be back on August 6th (the first Saturday). And starting this week, Green Aisle Grocery will have cheese the Saturdays when neither Yellow Springs nor Doe Run is on site. Plus, some weeks, The Lansdowne Table offers wrapped chunks of cheese or farmers plates that
contain several kinds of cheese among other things. Thus, there will always be at least two places each week where you can pick up a hunk, a log, a container, or some other permutation of that most delicious and happy-making of foodstuffs, cheese.
Trees for Free
If you walked anywhere in Lansdowne this week, you experienced for yourself the difference that shade trees make along the street, and even before electricity and shorts were part of the vernacular, folks knew that a tree outside could help cool things off considerably inside. We've written here before about what a tree town Lansdowne is. From the stately Sycamore that lends its silhouette to the borough's signage and that inspired the naming of our award-winning restaurant, to the oaks and maples and dogwoods that line the streets and positively
glow in the fall, 'Downe Town is inseparable from its trees. Except that many of them are mature and ailing and occasionally come down in storms, and many homeowners think their trees are a danger or a bother or messy and so have them removed. Consequently, a town that's defined by its trees seems to have fewer every year. But not if Mary Lou Jennings and
Tree Vitalize can help it. Their mission is to bring wonderful tree cover back to the region, with all the shade, environmental benefits, and beauty that accompany it. To that end, Mary Lou will be at the Market this Saturday collecting names and addresses of Lansdowne residents who would like a free tree for their front yard. You sign up, they come see what size tree would be best
for your location, you pick the kind you want, and they give it to you for free. You just plant it. What a deal! If you're interested in this offer but won't be at the Market Saturday, Mary Lou would still love to speak with you; give her a call: 610-622-0162.
Kidcentric Day. Butterflies, birds, goats, hula hoops, games, used book sale. You get the idea. Rest up.
House Concert Tonight
Catch a great show in an unlikely venue, when
David Jacobs-Strain plays with host Bob Beach at Concerts at the Beach House tonight, July 21, at 7:30 pm. With the Lansdowne Folk Club on summer hiatus and U2 already come and gone, this is the best shot for live music going.
These homey (literally) shows put you close to the artists and cost only a donation of $15 (which goes straight to the musicians). Bring some munchies to share and your own bottle (which you may also share if you'd like). Contact Bob for more info: 610-626-0012 or
We've been asking you to give your input on what sorts of businesses you'd like to see in Lansdowne, and more than 130 people have responded to the survey, which is exciting. But now we have to wrap it up. This weekend is your last chance to give us your feedback --
and to win a dinner at Sycamore! The survey will close at 11:59 pm Sunday, July 24. (But it'll take a few minutes to do, so don't wait until 11:57 to log on.) Next week we will announce the dinner winners. Thank you to everyone who has given us new ideas for 'Downe Town. Here is the
survey link; head on over!
Lots of people travel great distances to assist those less fortunate for a week or two every summer. Here's an opportunity to lend a hand close to home. The Lansdowne/Yeadon Elm Street Project is looking for volunteers to work on the homes of elderly, disabled, and low-income residents at a summer
workcamp, from August 8 to 12. Tasks will include basic home repairs, light landscaping, and rain barrel installation. If you can help or would like to make a donation (cash, food, gift cards) toward this effort, call 610-745-4063 or fill out the
online volunteer form.
Just Keep Moving
A few LFM regulars participated in last weekend's
Back on My Feet Race to benefit the homeless. This is a 24-hour event in which team members run as far as they can and the distances are totaled, typically ending up well over 100 miles. Why would anyone want to do that, right? When you see LFM committee member George Blum, local photographer
Jeremy Fountain, or Great Harvest proprietor
Debbie Henderson at the Market, you can ask them, because they all did it. Congratulations to these big-hearted, sore-footed, and clearly unbalanced people!