The states of Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio are home to expansive cropland, beautiful lakefront beaches, and bustling cities that are home to arts, music, and some of the best universities in the world. Whether you are gazing at masterworks in The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, sunning on the beaches of Lake Michigan, or visiting the historic Cincinnati Zoo, there is much to do in the Midwestern United States. When the conversation shifts to farmers markets, however, the Midwest region is particularly interesting: While other parts of the United States, such as segments of the Northeast and Pacific Northwest, can make claims for having some of the best farmers’ markets in America, the Midwest region likely has the highest concentration of historic markets, with some dating back as early as before the Civil War. Contending with the characteristically cold weather, many of these markets are also marked by the presence of an actual building where regional farmers could ride into town and sell their wares. The result today is that many farmers’ markets in the Midwest region of the United States are indoor events that can oftentimes provide shopping experiences which rival that of conventional grocery stores. Unlike most markets in America, many farmers’ markets in the Midwest stay open year-round, and are available anywhere from 3-7 days a week, and are open for up to 8—sometimes even 12—hours a day for business.

 

Michigan

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The Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market

Ann Arbor, MI

(Winter/Spring) Jan – Apr.,

(Summer/Fall) May – Dec.

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If you are ever in the beautiful town of Ann Arbor, Michigan, in the summertime you should pick out a Wednesday or Saturday to stop by the Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market. Come to this open-air market year-round for honey, jams, baked goods and your usual locally made and raised products. But just as much as the Ann Arbor Farmers’ market is a great place to find food, it can sometimes be a shopping destination as well, with artisan craftsmen selling a wide variety of fine goods, from pottery and jewelry to apparel and furniture.

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Address:

315 Detroit St.

Ann Arbor, MI 48104

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Hours:

Summer/Fall – Wednesdays, Sundays (7:00am-3:00pm),

Winter/Spring – Sundays (8:00am-3:00pm)

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The Fulton St. Farmers’ Market

Grand Rapids, MI

(Winter/Spring) Nov – Apr.,

(Summer/Fall) May – Oct.

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Founded in 1922, the Fulton St. Farmers’ Market is one of the oldest markets in Michigan. Featuring 119 outdoor booths in its open-air market, as well as 9 indoor booths, the Fulton St. Farmers’ Market is a prime destination for vegetables, meat, dairy and hand-crafted foods. Swing by and pick up Pastys from Grampa’s Pastys, hard cider from People’s Cider Co, or delicious vegan ice cream from Ninth Wonder Dream Cream. The marketplace also has a corresponding artisan market that is founded and run by artists, and has been successfully in operation for over 16 years.

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Address:

1147 E. Fulton St.

Grand Rapids, MI 45903

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Hours:

Summer/Fall – Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays (8:00am-2:00pm),

Winter/Spring – Saturdays (10:00am-1:00pm)

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Eastern Market

Detroit, MI

Year Round

Affiliated Partner: Michigan Farm to Freezer

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Founded in 1891, Detroit’s Eastern Market is the oldest, and one of the largest–if not the largest–farmers’ markets in Michigan. As a permanent fixture within the Detroit economy, the Eastern Market is more than a farmers’ market: It is functionally, an entire local food district, replete with more than 250 independent and local vendors wholesaling, processing and retailing food. Probably the most defining feature of the Eastern Market, however, is the shifting focus in its market days. While the marketplace itself has vendors that are based within it throughout its three-day week, on Saturdays, the Eastern Market expands even further, accommodating local farm vendors who provide fruits, veggies, flowers, specialty food products as well as grass fed meat. If you prefer arts and crafts, come by on a Sunday to experience a wide sampling of home goods, art, jewelry, vintage clothing, antiques and furniture. It is also home to our packaging partner—Michigan Farm to Freezer—who sells local Michigan produce at the market. Finally, on Tuesdays, visitors can experience a variety of educational, wellness and culinary tasting events. There are only a few farmers’ markets in America like Detroit’s Eastern Market—and for any farmers’ market enthusiast, this place is just as much a tourist destination as it is a place to find exceptional weekly groceries.

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Address:

2934 Russel St.

Detroit, MI 48207

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Hours:

Tuesday (9:00am – 3:00pm)

Saturday (6:00am – 4:00pm)

Sunday (10:00am – 4:00pm)

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Ohio

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West Side Market

Cleveland, OH

Year Round

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If there ever was an equivalent point of comparison to Detroit’s incredible Eastern Market, it would be Cleveland’s West Side Market. Though smaller than the Eastern Market, the West Side market is home to 100 vendors offering meats, seafood, fruits, vegetables, baked goods and a variety of ready to eat foods. Pick up piping hot Gyros at Steve’s Gyros, or peruse the latest bounty from Brother’s Produce. Get unique herb blends at Urban Herbs, and fresh seafood at West Side Seafood. Similar to the Eastern Market, the West Side Market is also indoors, and one of the oldest farmers’ markets in the state of Ohio. While almost all of the available vendors within The West Side market are food providers, The West Side Market offers a distinctly foods-focused experience that serves as a perfect example for what a localized, farmer-focused, alternative to the traditional grocery store can look like.

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Address:

1979 West 25th St.

Cleveland, OH 44113

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Hours:

Monday, Wednesday (7:00am – 4:00pm)

Friday, Saturday (7:00pm – 6:00pm)

Sunday (12:00pm – 6:00pm)

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North Market

Columbus, OH

Year Round

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Though North Market is not explicitly a farmers’ market, it has made our list because of its distinct focus on independent businesses and service providers. They also have a great selection of premade foods as well! As one of the finest public markets in the country, North Market serves over 1M guests each year and is easily one of the oldest public markets in Ohio with a founding date in 1876. As a destination for meat, produce, and specialty food items, North Market is also a destination for special events, such as crawfish boils and community yoga. In similar fashion to Cleveland’s West Side Market, and Detroit’s Eastern Market, the North Market is an indoor experience that delivers customers a smorgasbord of premade foods and products. Dine on authentic Somali cuisine at Hoyo’s Kitchen, or traditional Japanese food at Satori Ramen bar, buy local cheese at Black Raddish Creamery, or fresh bread from Omega Bakery. Also! North market is not just one, but two locations. So whether you are in Downtown Columbus, or Bridge Park, North Market has something for you to do.

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Address:

North Market – Downtown Columbus

59 Spruce St.

Columbus, OH 43215

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North Market – Bridge Park

6750 Longshore Drive

Dublin, OH 43017

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Hours:

North Market – Downtown Columbus

Tuesday-Friday (9:00am – 6:00pm),

Saturday (8:00am – 6:00pm),

Sunday (10:00am – 4:00pm)

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North Market – Bridge Park

Monday (9:00am – 5:00pm)

Tuesday, Wednesday (8:30am – 8:30pm)

Thursday-Saturday (8:30am – 10:00pm)

Sunday (8:30am – 10:00pm)

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Illinois

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Logan Square Farmers’ Market

Chicago, IL

(Spring/Fall) May – October

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The Logan Square Farmers’ Market is a popular neighborhood market that is open to vendors from as far as Michigan and Wisconsin. Open from Spring to Fall, this lively weekend destination is open on Sundays and can be a great place to find not only regional produce and meat but also live music. Come here for locally made beef jerky, dog treats, BBQ, hummus, and of course, beer.

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Address:

3113 W. Logan Blvd.

Chicago, IL 60647

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Hours:

Sundays (10:00am – 3:00pm)

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Urbana’s Market At The Square

Urbana, IL

Summer/Fall

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Serving the community of Urbana since 1979, Urbana’s Market at the Square is home to over 150 unique vendors and is one of the largest weekend farmers’ markets in the state of Illinois. Come here for meats and produce, as well as canned goods, wine, and artisan soap. Urbana’s Market at The Square is distinctly committed to improving the local food economy and runs their market primarily from the stance of local food activism. Just as much as the market seeks out local farmers, meat producers, and artisans, they also encourage producers of pre-made products, as well as food, to do their best to use local ingredients–even those grown by the vendors in the market. You can find this market open during the summers and fall in Urbana.

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Address:

Corners of Illinois and Vines Streets,

Urbana, IL 61801

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Hours:

Saturday (7:00am – 12:00pm)

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Peoria Riverfront Farmers’ Market

Peoria, IL

Summer

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Located in the River Station Parking lot across from the Riverfront Museum, the Peoria Riverfront Farmers’ Market is only one of a handful of near-the-water experiences on our list. Along with local produce and meat, come here for a one-of-a-kind selection of art, from blown glass to jewelry. Home to hundreds of vendors from the Illinois region, the Peoria Riverfront Farmers’ Market is an attraction for anybody that is interested in great food–whether they are a parent to a family of four or the head chef at a four-star restaurant. No matter what, however, this market is sure to have a little bit of something for everybody.

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Address:

212 SW Water St.

Peoria, IL 61602

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Hours:

Saturday (8:00am – 12:00pm)

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Indiana

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Shipshewana Auction & Flea Market

Shipshewana, IN

(Summer/Fall) May-Sept

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On the list of attractions that farmers’ market enthusiasts would love in the state of Indiana, the Shipshewana Trading Place would have to reside at the top of the list. Heck, even when compared to some of the other markets on our list, this place is truly impressive, capitalizing the “D” in destination. At its core, the Shipshewana Trading Place is billed to the public as a flea market–and even by flea market standards, the Shipshewana Trading place is in a league of its own. With a whopping 700 vendor booths on a given summer weekend, the trading place is the destination in Indiana for thrift items, arts, crafts, antiques, and the like. But it is also a place for a variety of local food options that you simply cannot get anywhere else. Only hosting farmers that are within 15 miles of the township of Shipshewana–which is a markedly smaller radius than almost all of the other producer-only markets on our list–Shipshewana functions as a hyper-local farmers market as well as a flea market on the weekends. If that isn’t enough, the Shipshewana Trading Place also has an on-site bed and breakfast, as well as an RV park for those that wish to stay a little bit longer. For those interested in taking a visit, we recommend allocating at least 2 hours to the trip–as there is quite a bit to see! Really, if we are being honest, you could probably spend an entire weekend here thrifting around.

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Address:

345 S. Van Buren St. (SR 5),

Shipshewana, IN 46565

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Hours:

Monday-Friday (8:00am-5:00pm)

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The Indianapolis City Market

Indianapolis, IN

Year-Round

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In similar fashion to other midwestern states, the Indianapolis City Market is Indiana’s incredible entry to the city market scene that characterizes much of the Midwest’s array of farmers’ markets. Founded in 1821, the Indianapolis City Market has served as one of the oldest Farmers’ Markets in Indiana–and the oldest in the city of Indianapolis. Swing by this historic farmers’ market on Monday-Friday, from 7am-9pm, and from 8am-9pm on Saturdays to experience what is probably one of the most well-rounded indoor market experiences in America. While the marketplace is still very much shaped by its assortment of local farmers, as well as independent artisan vendors, the Indianapolis City Market also has a few things that truly position it as a centralized fixture within the greater Indianapolis community. Just as much as the city market is a destination for locally sourced produce and meat, it also features a simple convenience store for everyday items, a taproom for people who want to spend their leisure time, haircuts, a YMCA, and bike repairs. It is this unique combination of boutique produced goods, local goods, practical goods, and services that easily vault the Indianapolis City Market to being one of the best farmers’ markets in the country–if not for its size, then for the way it has uniquely positioned itself as a fixture within the greater Indianapolis community.

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Address:

222 E. Market St.

Indianapolis, IN 46204

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Hours:

Monday-Friday (7:00am-9:00pm),

Saturday (8:00am-9:00pm)

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The Broad Ripple Farmers’ Market

Indianapolis, IN

Summer/Fall (May-Oct)

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While the Broad Ripple farmer’s market is a good bit younger than its City Market counterpart, it is still one of the best places to find locally sourced produce and pre-made goods within the City of Indianapolis. Come here during the summer or fall on a Saturday to find locally made Kombucha, Kimchi, and Breakfast sandwiches along with cocktail mixes, fruits, vegetables, locally sourced bison, and artisan chocolates.

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Address:

7700 N. Meridian St.

Indianapolis, IN 46260

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Hours:

Saturday (8:00am-12:00pm)

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