Family Fun Day at the Farmers Market
Dartmouth children were enchanted at the Farmer’s Market Family Fun Day on Friday, which had face painting, a Disney princess, a fire truck, and interactive music — as well as plenty of space for kids to run and play on the lawn outside St. Mary’s Church.
Tents were set up for the traditional market vendors, with produce from Flying Carrot and Silverbrook Farms, fresh bread, pressed juice, and handmade baskets and jewelry.
Children of all ages chased each other on the grass, lined up at the face painting tent, took photos with Princess Ariel, and sat in a circle on a blanket strewn with musical instruments to sing along with Rhonda Matson of South Coast Music Together.
The organization — now in its 16th year — helps children and families engage in musical play for both fun and development.
“Music learning supports all learning,” Matson explained. “Music is our first language…It starts at birth and continues all the way up to the very end.”
“This is wonderful,” she added, indicating the busy market around her. “What more could we ask for?”
Kelsey and Marcus Simpson of Dartmouth were waiting in line with their son Koa, 2, to get his face painted.
“He seems to be having fun,” Kelsey said with a smile. It was the family’s first time at the market, and they said they were having a good time.
“We did music, we went on a fire truck, we got some juice, and now we’re gonna do some face painting,” she said. “So far everything’s been good.”
Stephanie Ducharme and Kai Srisirikul were following their one-year-old daughter Olivia as she made a beeline for Disney Princess Ariel, 20-year-old Dartmouth resident Frances Howard from Princesses of New Bedford.
“This is my second [Dartmouth market],” said Ducharme. “It’s nice. I like the variety.”
Olivia suddenly changed tack, running off in the opposite direction.
“She is having fun,” Ducharme laughed as Srisirikul ran after her. “She’s chasing all the kids, she likes the princess, the music, the fire truck. She’s checking out the produce.”
Ducharme added that she was also checking out the offerings. “We’ll probably leave with some bread and some produce and juice,” she said.
Olive oil and balsamic vinegar vendor Tony Melli was also having fun, telling customers about the history of balsamic and the process of making it.
He noted that farmers markets are “healthy places.”
“At a farmer’s market, you can actually explain to your customer why it tastes the way it does. It’s a beautiful thing,” Melli said.
And he added that he was particularly enjoying this one.
“The kids, the dancing,” he said. “I’m having a ball!”