Metro East region farmers markets open for a fresh new season

Chronicle Media staff

The Vine Street Market is located in the heart of the O’Fallon Downtown District at the O’Fallon Station. (Photo courtesy of the Vine Street Market)

Shoppers and vendors alike are preparing for the return of farmers markets throughout the Metro East region in communities across Madison and St. Clair counties.  Here is a look at some of the local markets and some of their features.


This year marks the 31st year for the Alton Farmers’ & Artisans’ Market which is held on Saturday mornings from 8 a.m. to noon now through Oct 21.  The market is held, regardless of the weather, in the parking lot at the corner of Landmarks Boulevard and Henry Street in downtown Alton, Illinois.

Shoppers will be able to choose locally grown seasonal fruit and vegetables including heirloom varieties and organically grown crops, along with grass-fed beef, pasture-raised poultry, farm fresh eggs, locally generated honey, hot and iced coffee, fresh bread and other baked goods, according to the website.

In addition to food items, vendors will also be selling fresh cut flowers, potted plants, and a large assortment of hand-crafted artwork such as pottery, stained glass, soap, candles, and woodworking items.

New this year to the market are vendors serving ready-to-eat breakfast and lunch meals to eat on-site.

Live entertainment, artist demonstrations and other special activities will be featured every week, according to the market’s website. To receive reminders for upcoming entertainment and activities, follow the page:

This Alton Farmers’ & Artisans’ Market is organized by Alton Main Street.

Live music is an integral part of creating the festive atmosphere at the Alton Farmers’ & Artisans’ Market. (Photo courtesy of the city of Alton)


The Land of Goshen Community Market is held on Saturday mornings, 8 a.m. to noon May through the third week of October, at North 2nd Street, and St Louis Street in downtown Edwardsville.

The Goshen Market is in its 26th year and was founded by a committee made up of local business people and residents.  The market features vendors, musicians, demonstrators, and community tables and also programs for children provided by the Market Sprouts. The group focuses on educating children and families on the importance of locally sourced food, according to the market’ website. ‘

Yoga classes are often offered at the market square.


The Vine Street Market is open for business every Saturday morning from 8 a.m. to noon May through Oct 21.  It is located in the O’Fallon Downtown District at the O’Fallon Station, 105-111 S. Vine St., part of the O’Fallon Parks and Recreation Department.

The Vine Street Market includes more than 50 vendors each week and it places an emphasis on locally sourced food from within 100 miles of O’Fallon, according to the market’s website.

Farmers and food makers offer produce, meats, dairy, wine, baked goods and sweet treats.  In addition to food, the market features artisans from throughout the area with their handmade arts and crafts and other goods, such as soaps, candles, and textiles.

Dogs are welcome.


The Swansea Farmers’ Market, which began in 2009 by a group of volunteers, is open every Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. May through October, rain or shine.

The market, located in the Rural King Parking Lot, 2801 N. Illinois St., is known for its variety of locally grown fresh fruits, vegetables and meats, baked goods, and handcrafted goods from the region.