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Posted on Sat, Nov 28, 2009 : 5:45 p.m.

Sunny weather a boon for holiday sales at Ann Arbor Farmers Market

By Erica Hobbs

For many people like Diane Sproull and her husband, shopping at the Ann Arbor Farmers Market during the holidays has become a tradition.

“This is what we come for every year,” said Sproull, who drove with her husband from Livonia Saturday to shop for Christmas decorations.

Just days after Thanksgiving, booths of wreathes, poinsettias and candles dominated the open-air market in Kerrytown, standing out among the standard tables of fruits and vegetables.


Mike and Cindy Fisher of Saline buy a wreaths at Gracia Greenhouse and Wreaths and Blankets at the Kerrytown Farmer's Market.

Angela J. Cesere |

Other merchants were selling holiday gifts ranging from handmade jewelry and knitwear to handpainted bowls and ornaments made of gourds.

With sunny skies and warmer temps, the mood was festive around the market Saturday afternoon - shoppers enjoying the weather and vendors happily selling their wares. Many merchants, who said sales were up, credited the boost to the holiday season and the good weather.

“It’s been super crazy,” Maite Zubia said, owner of Maitelates, which specializes in chocolate-dipped, dulche de leche cookies among others. “I didn’t expect this.”


Steve Brock of Venas/Brock Greenhouse looks over his holiday display at the farmers market in Kerrytown on Saturday.

Angela J. Cesere |

Zubia, who was selling holiday boxes of the cookies, said she planned to leave the market early because she was about to run out of inventory.

Likewise, Kapnick Orchards’ booth sold almost all of its baked goods and went through 12 gallons of hot cider, in addition to its apples out for sale.

“This is one of the better days-after-Thanksgiving I can remember,” Scott Robertello said. “It really makes a big difference when the sun is out.”

Anne Elder, who was selling goods with the Community Farm of Ann Arbor, said the farm had added wreathes to their booth last week, which were one of their most popular sale items today. Sales on all their goods, including vegetables, knitwear and hand cream, were up as well.

“The idea of buying local is sinking in, and it’s making a difference,” she said.

Shoppers also did well at the market, many walking away with fresh Christmas decorations and gifts or picking up some homegrown vegetables.

Thumbnail image for KerrytownFarmersMarket2.JPG

Farmers market merchants credited their uptick in sales Saturday in part to the good weather.

Tess Wosen, a former local who was visiting for Thanksgiving, was perusing the market with her aunt and grandma.

“When I’m home I have to come out, it wouldn’t be the same if I didn’t,” she said.

Mother and daughter Leela and Eve Kausche said they came for their weekly grocery shopping and ended with a few gifts for family too.

“It’s always awesome here,” Eve Kausche said. “We just love the Ann Arbor Farmers Market.”

Erica Hobbs is a freelance reporter for


E. Manuel Goldstein

Tue, Dec 1, 2009 : 8:58 a.m.

Dear Mr Needham and the Ann Arbor public, I will be attending the Public Market Advisory Commission meeting today at 6:15pm, on the 4th floor of the Public Library on 5th Street to deliver copies of my petition for a better, more explicit set of baked goods rules to be adopted by "the city". Although you may consider the issue closed, and "the city" may consider the issue closed, I still have the right, in this democratic Republic, to seek redress of grievances. My opinion is that "the city" is wrong in its failure to enforce its own rules in this instance. So far the facts support my assertions, and not one person in "the city", nor has Mr Robertello of Kapnick's Farm Market, put forth any sort of argument that what I have exposed is untrue. If you at and "the city" wish to continue peddling the notion that all is right at the Farmers Market, in the face of the evidence of lying and cheating by a few privileged vendors, and without further investigation, then I think that is a public disservice and a disgrace. I have made myself available time and again to discuss my grievances with local media, and although this is not a major issue for everyone in Ann Arbor, the source of one's food (preferably local) is becoming an important concern for a growing number of citizens. The Public Market exists to serve the citizenry, and I will continue to call attention to violations of the public's trust, regardless of your desire to silence me by repeating the mantra "case closed".

E. Manuel Goldstein

Mon, Nov 30, 2009 : 3:09 p.m.

If Scott Robertello made all of Kapnick's Orchards baked goods from scratch, he might sell out every week. The fact is, many of the baked goods he does sell at the Ann Arbor Farmers Market are thaw-and-bake products delivered by Lipari's, a prepared foods supplier. Shame on Market Manager Mollie Notarianni for allowing this blatant cheating to go on at our market. Ann Arbor citizens deserve better than such business fraud.