Theres something for you at the farmers market.
But which one?
Farmers markets steadily have grown in the South Sound during the past decade, and each has unique characteristics.
Fresh, local produce is just the start.
Tacomas market is one of the largest in the area, with an average of 80 vendors at the Broadway Market.
Its one of three markets Tacoma Farmers Market holds each week through September.
The others, 6th Avenue and South Tacoma, are smaller and newer.
Theres a different flavor at each market, Vendor Coordinator Kayla Waldorf said.
South Tacomas is closest to JBLM, but also is the smallest with 25 vendors, Waldorf said. Housed at the STAR Center on Sundays, the 4-year-old market makes it easy for parents to give kids something to do while they shop. There also is live entertainment and cooking classes.
South Tacoma opens at 11 a.m. and closes at 3 p.m. The market starts earlier in the year than the other markets April through September.
A unique feature of the market is the fresh crepes served up by Waffle Express and Crepery, a Graham business that uses local ingredients in all its baking.
The STAR Center is at 3873 S. 66th St.
Broadway is the main market, stretched between 9th and 11th streets along Broadway in downtown Tacoma. The market has popular hot food vendors: Gateway To India, Philly This and newcomer The Black Flag to entice downtown workers and hungry shoppers.
The market dazzles with its low-priced fresh bouquets available at multiple flower stalls along the street. Wood, leather, yarn, chocolate, bakery, pasta, honey and handmade soap products also are available.
Broadway is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., May through October, There are two parking garages downtown within walking distance of the market. You also can park your car at the Tacoma Dome and ride the Tacoma Link light rail.
Waldorf said people have told her the 6th Avenue Market is their favorite. Nestled along 6th Avenue in the heart of Tacoma, it features about 30 to 35 vendors each week. The 6th Avenue neighborhood is picturesque, but also has many shops to stop and eat at during market hours.
The market goes from 3 to 7 p.m., but has the shortest schedule of the three, running from May to September each year.
Find it at the corner of 6th Avenue and Pine Street.
More South Sound Farmers Markets
Location: 17835 Highway 507 SE
Hours: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sundays
Duration: June 9 through October
Vendors: About 20
Age: 2 years
Big Difference: Started by JBLM spouse Geana Henkes, the market is hosted by Nisqually Springs Farm, a 250-acre certified organic farm near the Nisqually River, complete with corn maze.
Location: 330 S Meridian (Pioneer Park), Puyallup
Hours: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays
Duration: April 13 to Oct. 20
Vendors: About 180
Age: 32 years
Big Difference: The largest, it also has a new evening market 3-7 p.m. Wednesdays.
Location: N 27th Ave. and Proctor St., Tacoma
Hours: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays
Duration: March 31-Dec. 21
Vendors: About 50
Age: Around 20 years
Big Difference: Three stages of live music, occasional special events.
Location: 6000 Main St. SW
Hours: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesdays
Duration: June 4 to Sept. 17
Age: 2 years
Big Difference: Many of its farmers are from Eastern Washington, and some bring Asian-themed produce.
Location: 700 N Capitol Way
Hours: 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Thursday through Sunday
Duration: April through October, then weekends for November and December
Vendors: Around 70
Age: Supporting nonprofit organization established 18 years ago (1995).
Big Difference: Largest market around the Olympia area.
Location: Corner of Lafayette and Wilkes Streets
Hours: 3-7 p.m. Wednesdays
Duration: Through August
Vendors: Around 50
Age: 5 years
Big Difference: A social atmosphere, where the community can connect.
Location: 1515 Harrison Way NW
Hours: 4-7 p.m. Tuesdays
Age: 3 years
Big Difference: Keeps its scale small to provide its young and beginning producers help to establish their businesses.
Location: 20 Tacoma Ave. S
Hours: 10 a.m.-3 p.m., every other Saturday
Duration: Aug. 17 and 31; Sept. 14 and 28
Vendors: Several dozen
Big difference: Not a farmers market in the traditional sense, the Stadium Fare does feature several fresh food vendors and plenty of entertainment. It's located in the historic Stadium District of downtown Tacoma.