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New York: Fall farmers’ markets outside Manhattan

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Ladling up some hot apple cider at the Grand Army Plaza farmers' market. Photo: Howard Walfish
Ladling up some hot apple cider at the Grand Army Plaza farmers' market. Photo: Howard Walfish

By Desiree Browne in New York—

The summer tourists have gone home and most of the weird, simmering smells have dissipated. Why not fall in love with New York this autumn by shopping for seasonal fare at the city’s outdoor farmers’ markets, some of which offer free activities?

Of course, you could head straight to the “big daddy” of New York’s farmers’ markets, the famous Union Square Greenmarket (open Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m; Union Square). But what about less-packed markets?

Here are my favorite farmers’ markets, off the Island of Manhattan:

Grand Army Plaza Market
Grand Army Plaza, Prospect Park West and Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn
Market hours: Saturdays, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Web site

Lost in the Amazing Maize Maze. Photo: Joshbousel

GrowNYC operates 53 green markets throughout the five boroughs, but the beautiful backdrop of Brooklyn’s Grand Army Plaza makes your fresh produce shopping all the more glamorous. This market draws Brooklynites year round to the base of Prospect Park, but fall is the perfect time to take advantage of seasonal fare. Get in the mood for Thanksgiving: Fresh turkeys turn up each weekend from DiPaola Turkeys from Mercer County, New Jersey.

New York Botanical Garden Farmers’ Market
2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY
Market hours: Wednesdays 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Web site

Take your outdoor marketing up north this season to New York Botanical Garden’s Farmers’ Market, celebrating its 10th year in 2011. Every Wednesday, stock up on the freshest produce from New York. Enjoy fun events like the Fall Harvest Festival on November 2. Take home freshly-picked apples from Red Jacket Orchards and whip up a homemade pie—or let the orchard’s bakers do it for you.

The Amazing Maize Maze at Queens County Farm Museum
73-50 Little Neck Parkway, Floral Park, Queens
Market hours: September 17-October 30, Saturdays and Sundays, 11 a.m-4:30 p.m.
Adults, $9, Children $5
Web site

This fall, play with your food and get lost in the a-maize-ing maze at the Queens County Farm Museum. Feeling really adventurous? Try the “Maze By Moonlight” events on October 8 and 15 and take a shot at the labyrinth at night.

Pumpkin Patch at Queens Country Farm Museum

If the Farm Museum’s labyrinth (above) leaves you more dazed than amazed, spend a quiet day exploring the rest of the farm. Then pick your own pumpkins in the field (price based on size) and visit the animals on New York City’s only working historical farm.

Have a favorite fall farmers’ market?

Do you have a favorite farmers’ market in the city? Tell us about it in our comments section

About the author

Desiree Browne

About the author: Desiree Browne is a Brooklyn resident who can't imagine living anywhere but New York. An assistant at a parenting website, she loves spending her free time in more grown-up pursuits, like dancing salsa, searching for the best cafe au lait, and sampling the tastiest cocktails. Desiree also loves filling her Netflix queue with old movies, many of which she writes about on her vintage pop culture blog, Pop-o-matic Deluxe. Her work about her love of New York has appeared in The New York Observer, Metromix New York and The Awl.

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