Riverfront comes alive as local farmers markets return

Chronicle Media staff

In addition to fresh foods and produce on sale, the Peoria Riverfront Market features products crafted by regional artists. (Photo courtesy of of the Peoria Riverfront Market)

Shoppers and vendors alike are preparing for the return of farmer’s markets throughout Tazewell County and the nearby region.  Here is a roundup of the local markets and some of their features.

East Peoria

Beginning it’s 12th year, the East Peoria market is located in the Levee District on the Pedestrian Promenade — bounded West Washington Street, Clock Tower Drive, West Camp Street and Spinder Drive. and is open every Friday evening from 4 to 7 p.m. beginning June 2 and running through Aug. 25.

Pick up fruits, vegetables, home décor and more.  Vendors can sell fruits, vegetables, herbs, flowers, plants, eggs, poultry, baked goods, and approved jellies and jams, as long as it is all produced within the State of Illinois, according to the city of East Peoria.

The market organizers require that all craft items must be original works of art created by the seller or a family member, and “the hand-created component must dominate the commercial component.”

Cottage food operations must meet all requirements of the state of Illinois’ Cottage Food Act. (For details, visit https://extension.illinois.edu/cottage-food).

The market also includes and encourages live entertainment. Those interested should contact Market Manager Mark Hill by phone at 309-360-4581 or send an email to markhill@cityofeastpeoria.com.


The Morton Farmers Market N’ More will be back for a sixth season. The market is held Tuesdays, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. from June 6 through August.

The market is located at Church Square, 225 E. Jefferson St., but organizers this season are offering local businesses and organizations the opportunity to host the market on a specific date.


The farmer’s market is back for a second year at the Miller Center Parking Lot, located at 551 S. 14th St., Pekin, overlooking Pekin’s Mineral Springs Park Pavilion and Lagoon.

The market is open Thursdays, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m., beginning June 1 and running through Aug. 31. It will move indoors in the event of inclement weather.

The market is a weekly family event that features live entertainment, and local vendors, crafts, food trucks. Each weekly market brings the familiar favorites and with a few variations each week.

The location provides visitors to the market a chance to also enjoy nearby park amenities.

Peoria Heights hosts its annual farmers market on Wednesday evenings at Tower Park. (Photo courtesy of village of Peoria Heights)

Peoria’s market is back in action every Saturday morning from 8 a.m. to noon now through Sept. 30 along Peoria’s river front, in the River Station parking lot, 212 SW Water St., directly across from the Peoria Riverfront Museum.

Everything is locally grown and brought directly from farms and gardens from the Central Illinois area each week.

In addition to fresh produce and other food products, the market features wares from local artisans. art including pottery, blown glass, jewelry, wood turned items, candles, soaps and more~ all handcrafted by local artists.

The Downs Village Market  is open every Wednesday evenings 4 to 6 p.m. June through September held at 103 W. Franklin St.

Beginning 20 years ago, the market began with the goals of  “keep it Local, Keep it Lively, Keep it Friendly, and Keep it Community,” according to the village.

During those first years, the Downs Village Market Committee was Cheryl and Dave Bach, Ruth Hood, and Carol Hiebert.  The committee has grown along with the market itself as it now includes many musicians, locally-made arts and crafts, fresh baked goods, master gardeners on hand to answer questions as well as locally-grown vegetables and fruits.

Peoria Heights
The farmers market is a Wednesday afternoon/evening market from 4 to 7 p.m., at Tower Park,  4901 N. Prospect Road, Peoria Heights. Visitors can enjoy dinner and live music in addition to shopping.