Locally-Grown Produce at Fruit Festival

Pike Place Market’s third-annual event is encouraging sustainability.

The Northwest may not be feeling the heat this season (yet), but we can at least eat like it’s summer, right? If you’ve been hiding indoors for the cloudy days we’ve seen lately, you’ll want to venture outside this weekend to take part in the third-annual Pike Place Market Fruit Festival.

The Pike Place Market Fruit Festival will be held this weekend on July 24. Photo courtesy of Pike Place Market.

For most of us, fruit is the food group that best combines delicious taste with great nutrition. Even so, most people don’t get enough fruits in their diet. On Sunday, July 24, this all-ages event will celebrate the abundance of fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables.

Some of the activities offered to passers-by include cooking demonstrations, Master of the Market chef competition, Chukar Cherries pie eating contests, zucchini derby car races, crafts for the kids, and music by Market Buskers — and the event is completely free to the public.

The Fruit Festival begins bright and early to entertain the energetic youngsters who’ve been dragged out of bed to attend this delicious event. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., kids will be able to color fruit sheets and draw on Chalky the Pig, a blackboard piggy.

Fresh, locally-grown fruit will be featured at the third-annual festival. Photo courtesy of Pike Place Market.

If you’re interested in meeting the farmers who grow the summer bounty, you’ll want to take the Free Farm Table Tour, which begins at 11 a.m. For those with a competitive streak, the Zucchini 500 Races allow you to construct a derby car out of a zucchini (with all supplies provided). At the top and half of each hour between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., contestants will get the chance to race their models down a track specially designed for — well, zucchini cars.

Those with the rare trait known as bottomless stomachs should jump at the chance to enter the Chukar Cherries Pie-eating Contests, which will be held at noon and 3 p.m. If you’re particularly interested in learning about sustainable agriculture, what it is and what it means for us in the future, then plan to attend the Sustainability Talk at 12:30 p.m.

Photo courtesy of Flickr/David Billingham

Finally, the “Master of the Market” Chef Cooking Competition will begin at 1 p.m. This contest will feature three chefs from Pike Place Market restaurants competing for the title — and medal — by race-shopping and preparing a culinary creation with a secret ingredient. Judges will be on hand to declare this year’s winner.

If you find yourself with a hankering for quality fruits and veggies this weekend, consider this to be your one-stop-shop for all things produce — and nip that craving in the bud. All activity tents will be on Pike Place between Pine and Virginia Streets.

Pike Place Market Fruit Festival | Pike Place Market | (206) 682-7453