Happy News, Finally: Palisades Farmers Market Returns to Swarthmore and Antioch

The Pacific Palisades Farmers Market returned to town on August 30 after an almost five month absence.                                                Photo: Shelby Pascoe

Offering the first “happy” news in a long time, the Pacific Palisades Farmers Market reopened on Sunday at two locations in the business district. Both locations had a variety of seasonal fruits, vegetables, flowers, nuts, soup, eggs and the extra snacks that residents have missed since the market closed in March, when it was located on the Palisades High stadium parking lot.

At 8 a.m. (the market opened at 7:30), there were no lines, but a respectable amount of people already on Swarthmore and Antioch shopping.  Free parking at Caruso’s Palisades Village seemed to take away some of the parking burden on neighboring streets.

The first location: Antioch was closed from Via de la Paz to Swarthmore, with vendors on both sides of the street. Customers could only enter on Swarthmore and there were guards to remind everybody about the rules that were in place because of Covid-19 regulations. There was a place for customers to line up and a second line for seniors and those who had already shopped on Swarthmore.

One of the two blocks that the farmers market is located on is Antioch Street between Via de la Paz and Swarthmore. Yellow marks were put on the street to remind people to social distance.
Photo: Shelby Pascoe

On Swarthmore, the entrance was just beyond the alleyway (behind U.S. Bank). There was no line, but provisions had been made so that people could line up on Swarthmore and then on the sidewalk along Sunset if necessary. A senior line/reentry line was established the bank parking lot.

This editor purchased blueberries on Swarthmore ($12 for three baskets), and then purchased additional baskets of three on Antioch (also $12) at two different locations. A blind taste-testing was done at the house and the berries purchased at the Cortez booth on Antioch were the clear winners—sweet and crisp.

Arnett offers a nice selection of peaches and plums, which have become one of my favorites at the Mar Vista Farmers Market. The vendor also brought her cinnamon almond butter. The problem with this butter is that it’s so yummy, the jar doesn’t last long.

Beets, carrots, kale and cauliflower all found a way into my bag.

Circling the News returned to the market shortly before it closed at 1 p.m., and several of the vendors said it had been a good day and that business was steady.

The few store owners that had opened during the market said that they had business, so it appears this will be a win-win for everyone. One store owner reported that residents “seemed happy.”

One of the residents said that the porta-potties set up on Via and Antioch for the farmers market were super clean and “deluxe.”

Melissa Farwell, director of coordination and development for the market, had written and August 24 email to the Village Green board and said, “We are more than happy to take out the trash [on the Green] at the end of the day and put a new bag in the trash can.”

The only downside Sunday is that a few of the neighboring businesses, such as Gelson’s, were never told that the market would be returning on Antioch (unless they read local media announcements).

Customers entered the farmers market on Swarthmore and exited on Monument.
Photo: Shelby Pascoe

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