TD Market offers fun, enriching weekend experience

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TD Market offers fun, enriching weekend experience

Main Street is the site of downtown Greenville's Saturday TD Market. Photo: Kayla Jacobs

Fresh produce, handcrafted cheeses, unique plants, beautiful pottery and more—local vendors sell these and all kinds of other amazing products on Main Street at the Saturday TD Market.These vendors fill two blocks of downtown Greenville’s Main Street with their booths every Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon from May through October.

Park at the Richardson St. Garage for free and take a short walk to the TD Saturday Market where you’ll find the everyday city traffic has vanished and been replaced by artisan vendors and their little white tents.Immersed in a world of colorful produce and fresh smells, people meander among the tents without their usual care for time.

All food is locally grown, and the items for sale are handmade. According to the TD Market website, thousands of people visit every week, drawn in by the chance to explore the tents and discover vendors selling their products from up to 100 miles away.With its friendly and inviting atmosphere, the market is a wonderful place to relax with friends. One vendor said that, compared to other city’s markets, the TD Saturday Market in Greenville is one of the best.

Will Donovan of Donovan Pottery said he likes being downtown at the market. “The people are always nice to meet, and it’s really a great atmosphere.” Donovan found his way into the craft after taking a college pottery class. He and his wife have been selling at the market for three years.

Vendors encourage you to try their free samples—taste a flavorful cheese spread on a cracker, drink some horchata, try some maple pecan granola and eat a slice of fresh three-cheese bread.Each vendor has a story of how they came to the market. Some grew up on farms or were already involved in a similar business; some of the vendors came upon their skills in a more unconventional way.

One booth, called the Youth Booth, is specifically designated for young vendors who want to showcase their work. Last week, a girl named Lily sold beautifully-crafted dangly earrings made from colorful beads.

“I like making things, and I’ve been making earrings since fifth grade,” Lily said. This was her first time selling at the market, but she is already loving it. After getting laid off, Jerry and Heather Dugan started their own vegetable garden.

“We ended up having too much produce,” Jerry Dugan said. “So we started High Valley Farm.” They sell fresh rainbow trout, fruit and vegetables from the Table Rock area.

Katie Williams, mother of two, started making soaps 10 years ago when her son suffered from eczema. Her habit soon became her business, “Peace Love and Soap,” which now sells a wide variety of all-natural soaps. “It’s been nice because I’ve been able to work from home and be with the kids,” Williams said.

For Elizabeth McDaniel, a truffle-making hobby with her niece turned into the business La Rue Fine Chocolate after they realized how popular their treats were.

McDaniel said, “I quit my corporate job, hopped on a plane, and got my Master Chocolatier Certification and then came back here and started a business.” La Rue Fine Chocolate now sells all sorts of flavors including passion fruit and Thai spice, peanut butter and gluten-free graham cracker.

In 1999 when Jeff Owen discovered his three kids were allergic to cow’s milk, he bought a few goats to supply milk. By 2003, they had over 50 goats, and Spinning Spider Creamery was born. Owen travels about 80 miles to come to the market so he can sell his spreadable cheeses each week.

A chef from Chicago, Kerrie Ostrander, came to the area to help a lady who suffered a stroke. When this lady decided to close her gluten-free bakery, Ostrander began Cup & Cake, which sells various cookies, cupcakes and other desserts.

Ostrander loves being able to customize for people who have celiac disease and other serious allergies. “[Customizing] is great because it’s more personal,” she said. For more information on vendors and for specific directions to the Saturday market, visit www.saturdaymarketlive.com.