Winter Market ends season Saturday

PARKERSBURG – The Winter Market will hold its final day of the season Saturday, celebrating another successful year with events and activities.

“When the market days were extended this season, organizers didn’t know what to expect,” said Rickie Yeager, planning administrator for the city of Parkersburg. “We’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback from vendors, shoppers and downtown businesses that are open during the Market. Attendance has been good and sales are up from the previous year.”

This Saturday, the Winter Market will be held in the front portion of the West Virginia University at Parkersburg Culinary School at 707 Market St., which is adjacent to where the market has been held previously this season. The Winter Market will be open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The market offers a bit of everything, from select cuts of meat to eggs, soaps, sundries and hand-knitted wares.

Yeager said to celebrate the market’s last Saturday this season, several additional activities have been planned.

“Thanks to Becky and Larry Gardner of Gardner Farmers, Gene Evans will be preparing a red wine braised short rib with creamy polenta and sauteed asparagus,” Yeager said.

Gardner Farmers is a vendor at the Winter Market and is located in Waverly. Evans is the new program director and instructor for the Culinary Arts Academy at WVU-P.

Evans also will be giving tours of the academy’s new facility throughout the day and his cooking demonstration will begin at noon.

Equally exciting is the Winter Blues Healthy Lifestyle School. This month, the school will feature a special seminar on container gardening, Yeater said. Stephanie Baker will give a brief presentation and demonstration on tower gardening, which is a state-of-the-art vertical garden system that was developed by Tim Blank of Future Growing.

Baker’s presentation will be immediately followed by a hands-on demonstration by J.J. Barrett, West Virginia University extension agent for Wood County, and Pamela Lutz, a member of the Wood County Master Gardeners and Parkersburg Tree Commission. Barrett will be showing participants how to grow herbs and vegetable plants in small places.

“If you’re thinking about starting a small garden this spring, then you don’t want to miss this demonstration,” Yeager said.

The first 20 participants to sign up will receive all the items needed to start their own container gardens including a pot, soil and five herb plants – chive, parsley, thyme, edible violas and baby onions. Participants also will receive a copy of the “The Bountiful Container,” courtesy of the Wood County Master Gardeners. The 400-page books explains how people can create their own vegetable gardens in containers.

To register for Incredible Vegetables in Container, contact Jay Fisher at 304-424-8518 or by email at jfisher@parkersburg-wv.com. The seminar is free to the public and made possible by the Highmark Foundations Let’s Move! Cities and Towns Partnership Program.

Organizers will be serving up light refreshments while supplies last at the market’s information booth. More information is available through the market’s Facebook page at Downtown Farmers’ Marketplace.