Kingston Farmers Market is an incubator for local businesses | Farmers Market

Looking about the market on a recent sunny Saturday, I got to thinking about the special role our Farmers Market plays in Kingston. We know it’s a place for us 98346’ers to enjoy our Marina Park while we buy and sell local produce, but do we notice that it’s also Kingston’s retail incubator — a place for local entrepreneurs to try out their products and ideas?

From left

From left

Looking about the market on a recent sunny Saturday, I got to thinking about the special role our Farmers Market plays in Kingston.

We know it’s a place for us 98346’ers to enjoy our Marina Park while we buy and sell local produce, but do we notice that it’s also Kingston’s retail incubator — a place for local entrepreneurs to try out their products and ideas?

Surely you’ve seen Nicole Matheson’s Mirracole Morsels in local grocery stores. Her product line has expanded from the yummy granola she first brought to the Kingston Farmers Market in 2002 to now include a wide variety of different granola mixes,  trail mix combos, cookies, and gluten-free goodies. Nicole has also transformed the historic Kingston Hotel into a cooperative commercial baking operation for other entrepreneurial local bakers.

The Borrowed Kitchen Bakery, owned by Lacey and Kory Anders, is located in the Bradley Center in downtown Kingston next to the NAPA store. The bakery is known for its fresh baguettes, breads, cinnamon rolls, cookies, muffins, pies, scones and turnovers. Borrowed Kitchen Bakery is a familiar presence at area farmers markets — in Kingston and Poulsbo on Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; and in Bremerton on Thursdays, 4-7 p.m.

Computer pros Ken Vasey and Cindy Tyo of Terrapin Farms never forgot their love of growing things. Ken studied to be a forester once upon a time. Starting with produce from his own land on Hood Canal, he added fresh produce from his family farm in Toppenish in 2002. Their operation grew to include greenhouses, seven acres under cultivation at two sites near Hood Canal, and six employees supplying five farmers markets throughout Kitsap County. Their popular farm store in Port Gamble is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Popular CB’s Nuts set up at the market twice during 2003 before landing a contract to supply the Seattle Seahawks games with their dry roasted peanuts. That operation really took off, with organic certification of their roasting facility at Streibel’s Corner in 2009. There are kiosks now in Central Market, Town & Country, PCC, Whole Foods, and elsewhere around Puget Sound.

Several local restaurateurs “concept tested” at the Kingston Market, including J’aime Le Crepe (now at the Kingston Ferry Dock) and Mike’s 5 Star BBQ (now in Port Gamble Village). Island Jamz offers Caribbean fare with steel drum music at its restaurant in Keyport.

And our local Viking Feast Ice Cream (just two years in business) is carried by many local grocery stores; its secrets seem to be Icelandic Skyr and exceptional flavor combinations. Market regular Amy’s Decadent Chocolates are now made and retailed in a historic building in Bremerton on 6th Street but began in 2005 at the Kingston Farmers Market.

Next month, a review of local craftspeople who launched at the Kingston Farmers Market — hint:  Corena Chamberlain’s whimsical luminaries light up dark corners all over Kitsap County, with retail storefronts in Poulsbo and the Silverdale Mall at holiday time. Have you noticed the table luminaries she created for the Main Street Ale House?

Music for September, usually 10 a.m. through closing.

Sept. 3: Jim Bybee. Fingerstyle guitar-looping virtuoso.

Sept. 10: Ali Marcus. Blues, country and folk, with a special mid-day appearance by the Sweet Adelines female barbershop group.

Sept. 17: Mike Murray. Fingerpicked folk guitar and banjo.

Sept. 24: TBA.

Interested in selling at the market? Visit our website www.KingstonFarmersMarket.com. Or call me or Clinton Dudley at 297-7683 or 710-4167.

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