MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Fort Gibson

July 7, 2014

Fresh food available: Farmers' Market open 3-7 p.m. on Thursdays

Market gardener Les Owens says he found a prime place to sell his produce Thursday evenings — under a shady tree at Langston Park.

Owens and other producers sell corn, watermelon, beans, potatoes, squash, even fried pies at Fort Gibson’s Farmers’ Market, held Thursdays at the park.

Prime time to come to the market is 3 to 7 p.m. Thursdays, said Fort Gibson Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Gary Perkins.

“There’s a melon guy who sells melons most of the day,” Perkins said.

Owens and his wife, Nell Owens, have a table under a shady tree.

“This is a good place to set up,” said Les Owens, who lives midway between Vian and Marble City.

“I’m a market gardener,” he said. “I’m retired, and this is my hobby. I like to garden, so I figured I’d make a little money off it.”

This is Owens’ first year to sell in Fort Gibson.

“I go to the Muskogee Farmers’ Market, and when we had a bunch of produce, we figured we’d find another outlet up here,” he said.

Although the market is open until 7, it helps to come early. That’s when people can get Martha Brown’s fried pies at $2.50 each.

“We live about three or four blocks away,” Brown said. “My daughter helps me with the pies, and we never have problems selling them.”

She said she and her daughter usually make 50 to 75 pies for the market.

“Depends on how we’re feeling, I guess,” she said. “Most people say apricot is their favorite. Some people say the coconut cream is to die for.”

Fort Gibson resident Caroline Points said she has a favorite.

“I like any of them, especially the chocolate ones,” Points said. “They’re pretty good.”

Points said she walks to the Fort Gibson Farmers’ Market every day it’s open, but sometimes comes late, missing the pies.

“They’re usually gone in 10 to 30 minutes,” Points said. “But once you eat them — oooh.”

On her latest visit, Points bought red potatoes from Owens’ stand.

“Which are the ones you don’t have to peel,” Points asked as she surveyed the vegetables.

She also checked out sweet slice cucumbers.

“You can make pickles out of them,” she said.

Vendors sell not only produce and pies but also meats and eggs, Perkins said.

Fort Gibson sixth-grader Carlee Fugate sells necklaces and other craft items to help pay for a leadership conference she is attending.

Perkins said the Farmers’ Market is open to any vendor “who wants to show up and set up.”

There are no booth fees, he said.

“All we say is no flea market items,” Perkins said.

Reach Cathy Spaulding at (918) 684-2928 or cspaulding@muskogeephoenix.com.

If you go

WHAT: Fort Gibson Farmers’ Market.

WHEN: 3 to 7 p.m. Thursdays.

WHERE: Langston Park.

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