It's Saturday morning and you're perusing a Wake County farmers market for vitamin-packed fresh fruits and vegetables. Healthy! Sustainable!
And then you get in your car and drive home. Unhealthy. Unsustainable.
There is an alternative: A new program in Cary, Roll or Stroll, is offering $5 in market bucks to people who, instead of driving, walk or ride a bike to the Cary Downtown Farmers Market, 135 W. Chatham St.
The program is sponsored by Advocates for Health in Action, a nonprofit that works with other organizations and city governments to encourage healthy lifestyles. AHA has included a map of greenways and sidewalks within a half-mile radius of the markets. (You can also find the maps at indyweek.com)
If your usual haunt is the Western Wake Farmers Market, bikers and walkers can enter a drawing to win a free tote bag. That market is on Morrisville-Carpenter Road between Davis Drive and N.C. 55.
The Cary Downtown Farmers' Market: Saturdays from 8 a.m.–noon and Tuesdays from 2–6 p.m.
The Western Wake Farmers' Market Saturdays, 8 a.m.–noon.
A third spot, Waverly Farmers' Market is open Saturdays from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. at the Waverly Place Shopping Center at the corner of Kildaire Farm and Tryon roads.
Since Wake Forest isn't in the thick of the RTP/Cary/Morrisville/Durham googolplex, the town of 32,000 often gets unfairly overlooked. But there's good eating in Wake Forest (and drinking at White Street Brewing), the latest being Farm Table which opens this month at 960 Gateway Commons Circle. The shopping center is southeast of downtown, and just south of N.C. 98.
One of 11 restaurants in the Giorgios Hospitality Group empire, Farm Table replaces a previous GHG eatery, Girasole Trattoria. The new restaurant focuses on seasonal dishes made with ingredients from local farms and herbs grown onsite. Local beers, wines and craft cocktails round out the drink menu.
Hours are Sunday–Thursday 5–9 p.m., Friday–Saturday 5–10 p.m. Reservations: 919-569-6714.
In Durham, the vacant space next to Mateo Bar de Tapas will not, I repeat, not be home to Dashi, as some downtown watchdogs have speculated. Kelli and Billy Cotter of Toast plan to open the Japanese ramen shop and pub at a location they cannot yet disclose because of paperwork, bureaucracy, etc. However, we can tell you where it's not: It's not in the old Organic Transit building. Or the space on Morris Street just north of The Cupcake Shoppe.
Oval Park Grille (1116 Broad St., 919-401-6566, ovalparkgrille.com) opened this week in the old Broad Street Cafe spot. The menu includes many locally sourced dishes—lots of vegetarian options, plus fish, duck and steak. Wash it down with a cocktail, wine or beer.
DEER EAT MULBERRIES, PEOPLE EAT BOTH—AT THE SAME TIME
The summer heat is seeping in, which means the mulberries are leaving us for another year. Last week, the trees in Northgate Park were laden with them, as were those in Maplewood Cemetery and in many of Durham's alleys.
You could make dozens of pies with all the mulberries, but artist Lauri Arntsen is using the fruit from her back yard trees to make mulberry venison meatballs with a cream cheese center. (Arntsen said she has to compete with the deer for the mulberries, but I trust these are not the same deer in the meatballs.)
You can try the hors d'oeuvres at an artists' reception Thursday, June 12, in the SunTrust Gallery of the Durham Arts Council, 120 Morris St.
Arntsen uses butterflies, bees and insects (presumably deceased), combined with dryer lint and other organic material in her mixed media work.
Also exhibiting work is Susan Jones, who applies colored pencil to her black-and-white photographs, and Chris Ogden who has created diptychs of nature photographs.