Farmers Market Brings Farm Fresh Food to Denver City Park

Margo and Peter Wanberg take City Park Farmers Market to the next level with accessibility and community engagement.

Woman buys vegetables from a City Park Farmers Market vendor.
Photo courtesy of City Park Farmers Market.

City Park Farmers Market is open for Colorado’s harvest season every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. through October 29. The market will host 90+ Colorado-based food producers, farmers and agriculture-based brands that will line the City Park Esplanade. This year, they are partnering with local non-profits to make healthy food accessible for everyone.

Focus on Nutrition

“Eating fresh is for everyone, not just the financially well-off,” says Peter. That’s why City Park Farmers Market is partnering with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for its second year. Additionally, new this year are partnerships with a local chapter of Colorado WIC (a supplemental nutrition program for women, infants and children) and Double Up Food Bucks to make each dollar go twice as far.

The Ela Family Farms places out bags of Colorado peaches at their City Park Farmers Market stall.
Photo courtesy of City Park Farmers Market.

Visit the Vendors

Their vendors include about 14 different farms, four ranchers and dairy producers, baked goods from vendors including Rebel Bread and Pandemic Donuts, food trucks such as Wong Way Veg and The Green Giraffe, food tents like Bonfire Burrito, plants and gardening tents, over 18 different food products and, of course, spirits from Denver Distillery and more. “We wanted to recenter our market to be extremely food, farmer and family-focused,” says Peter.

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Farming in Colorado comes with many challenges including, but not limited to, intense weather conditions and expensive land. Farmers markets are a great way to get outside, support local farmers and make healthier choices. “Local produce is higher in nutrient density. It is traceable and transparent so we know exactly where our food comes from. And that happens to be our own backyard. By buying local, we keep those dollars in our community and do not dilute it with national supply chains.”

Shake It Up

Additionally, the Wanbergs are working to make the market as interactive and community- centric as possible. There is a weekly running club, a yoga class with Big Power Yoga, a schedule of live music featuring local bands and rotating demonstrations by local chefs.

Each visiting chef will first shop the market, collecting any ingredients that inspire them. They will then prepare a number of samples that visitors to the market can try for free. Caroline Glover from Annette Scratch to Table will demo in August, Jose Avila from El Borrego Negro and Alex Astranti from Mercantile Dining & Provision in September and Paul Warthen from Potager Restaurant & Wine Bar in October.