Each week, Reston citizens flock to Lake Anne and Reston Town Center to examine the produce and wares available at local markets.
"All of what you see here is grown within 125 miles of Fairfax County," John Lovaas said. Lovaas is the co-market master for the Reston Farmers Market, which take place May through October on Saturdays from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. at Lake Anne. The Organic Market at Tall Oaks (TOMATO) approached the Reston Association with the idea of a fresh produce market after being denied by Giant 12 years ago.
Since then, the market has more than doubled from its original 12 vendors. Lovaas said that local chapters of the Democratic and Republican parties and other activist groups take advantage of the human traffic to advertise their causes.
"I am very pleased to have this market," said Mike Simpson, a customer from Herndon. "Getting fresh produce is something hard to do near the city."
The Reston Market, which takes place on Saturdays from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. until December, shares Lake Anne with the farmers market. Vendors pay rent to peddle their wares, which include jewelry, scarves and pottery, said Eve Thompson, coordinator for the market. The Friends of Lake Anne sponsor the market, now in its fifth year with an average of 40 vendors each week.
The market features "free trade" goods, Thompson said. These goods are bought directly from the native craftsmen by the Reston vendors. Rich Blumm, a "free trade" vendor, sold goods from Thailand, Bali and Burma while Marianne McManus’ crafts included those from Mali, Guam, Ghana, Thailand and the Philippines.
Customers at both Lake Anne markets can enjoy live music from bands in front of Reston’s Used Book Shop from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
"We have become a part of the community," Jean Janssen, market master for the farmer’s market in Reston Town Center said. Now in its second year, the farmers market has been moved this year to the pavilion.
"We are catering to people who do not cook as much," Janssen said, explaining the different focus of the market. Besides the various vendors, the market offers music, demonstrations, educational programs and a donated book drive. Janssen said that the market will host a book tour stop for the EatingWell magazine cookbook.
For more information, visit the Reston Farmers Market Web site at www.restonfarmersmarket.com, the Reston Market Web site at www.therestonmarket.com and the Reston Town Center market’s Web site at smartmarkets.org.