More new Organic good-for-you foods have arrived at the Hoquiam Farmers Market!
Each week I add more fine products to our shelves, so that soon we can become your main grocery shopping source. Well, at least right up there on the list! I’ve always been a bit of a dreamer.
Bob’s Red Mill Quinoa, Spelt Flour, Tapioca, Flaxseed Meal, Split Peas, Steelcut Oats, Eden Organic Sauerkraut, Greek Gods Yogurt and Cascade Natural Yogurt! Yummy Sahalee nut snack mixes, tasty crackers, and fine cheeses. Our Lattin’s Apple Cider is the best you’ll ever taste until you buy an apple press of your own. Add a loaf of Nancy’s wheat bread, and you’ve got the ingredients for a picnic. Looks like the weather gods are smiling on us once more for a dry weekend
I am due for a trip to Scotland. Something in my genetic heritage calls out every so often for a trip back to the old homeland. Since I can’t respond to the plaintive primal call, I go instead on a day trip to Tokeland. I beeline for the Tokeland Hotel, stride through the front door, take a deep breath and feel the healing peace of Scotland flowing into my soul. I’m sure that it is all in my head, but somehow this old place fills that void every time. There is nothing at all fancy about it, and the past 127 years of use have worn some of the floorboards down so much that there is a bit of a shipboard lilt as you walk into the dining room. Almost everything is in original condition- the wavy glass in the windows gives a fairytale unreality to the view of the garden. Like most Scottish gardens, this one bears the brunt of harsh winds from the ocean. The trees are twisted and bent, the Spring flowers must huddle close to the building in order to survive. There are days when the rain is hitting the glass so hard that I can’t see the garden at all, and one day snowflakes were drifting from the sky.
Next Saturday, come rain, shine, or even snow, we’ll be in Tokeland again. From 10am until 5pm the lobby and library will be filled with fine artists and craftspeople and the old boathouse doors will open to display Jeffro Uitto and Earl Davis’ amazing woodwork. You do not want to miss this event! Area artists, Judith Altruda and Marcy Merrill, along with others, will open their studios for your pleasure- a rare treat indeed. Plan on spending the day, make time to visit Nelson Seafoods. It, too, is reminiscent of Scotland- unpretentious, solid, reliable, and utterly wonderful. We always bring our bicycles along and ride the width and breadth of the Tokeland Peninsula, a pretty short ride.
Once upon a time Scotland was covered with trees. Over the eons all the trees were cut down and Scotland became a barren land, hardly fit for the grazing of sheep. Only in the past 60 years have the Scots begun to plant trees and manage forest lands, but it will never again reclaim the natural cycle of mingled ages and types of trees, never again be home to the animals that once inhabited the ancient woodlands. We are so very fortunate to have vast areas of ancient forests preserved. Arbor Day is the time when we can recognize the vital importance of maintaining our trees and forests and plant scads of new trees so that we never end up looking like a treeless wasteland. I don’t want to become a sheep farmer!
Hoquiam is celebrating Arbor Day on April 20th this year ( official national date is April 27th) and you’re all invited to the festivities. It is no small matter of pride to me that this years’ ceremony will be held in Elton Bennett Park. This is not your standard city park, this is a forest park- there is no ball field, instead there are meandering trails, the sheltering canopy of giant old trees, the musical croaking of frogs, Quinault Daffodils aplenty in the stream, and most of all- there is peace here. This is a park that our own citizens have created. First the Olympians Hiking Club created the trail system, then 79 volunteers from the all over Grays Harbor converged in 2009 to repair the catastrophic damage done by the 2007 storm. A young group of Americorps workers volunteered their free time in 2010 to finish the project, working long days to create a civilized wilderness in the center of town. Please come by on Friday, April 20th at 3:30 for a stroll through the park. Forester Kurt can answer tree questions, you are invited to help us plant seedlings to restore the canopy cover, and I can show you my favorite secret childhood hideaways.
Barbara Bennett Parsons, manager of the Grays Harbor Farmers market in Hoquiam- home of the best Scottish Shortbread on this continent!
1958 Riverside, Deidra’s Deli, Nancy’s Bajery, Organic Produce, Fine Art, Jewelry, and Crafts- oh, and lots of flowers and plants too!
Grays Harbor Public Market