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What You Need to Know About the Winter Market

2021 Downtown Winter Farmers' Market

November 18, 2021

As we approach the 2021 Downtown Winter Farmers’ Market events — Saturday, Nov. 20 and Saturday, Dec. 4 in Historic Court District — you might be wondering what to expect. This year, the Winter Market will take place outdoors to ensure a safe environment where social distancing can occur and vendors can still get their seasonal products into your hands.

From 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. each day of the Winter Market, you’ll find some of the best local offerings this holiday season, including on-site breakfast and lunch options with nearby high-top tables available for you to eat with friends and family.

2021 Vendors

You’ll find vendors offering local produce, meat and homemade jams and jellies at the Winter Market. Say Hello to Saltlickers or Dogpatch Urban Gardens, recently featured on our blog. New vendors this year include Kissed by Blyss, handcrafted body butter and soaps, and Sunny Meadow Farms with seasonal produce pasture-raised. You’ll also love stopping by returning favorites, such as Quilted Gardens Nursery with seasonal greenery, ornaments and holiday bells and Mast Family Farm, Storybook Orchard and Uncle Wendell’s with the season's freshest homemade pies, bread and cookies. Want Cheese? We have it! Simple Life Farms, Lost Lake Farm and Frisian Farms Cheese will help you stock up on farmstead artisanal cheeses to help you create a delicious and beautiful charcuterie board.

More than 70 local farmers, cheese makers, bakers and artists will be located on Court Avenue and adjacent side streets so that you can take in musical performances and family-friendly activities while you shop. A DIY Winter Ornament Workshop will also double as a cozy Warming Station inside Court Avenue Restaurant and Brewing Company (CABCO) so that you can get a break from the cold and find the perfect addition to your ornament collection.

You won’t want to miss hearing the performances from local musical groups during the Winter Market, including Top Hat Carolers, Cucho Madero, Andrew Hoyt and Ace Jones, who are sure to put you in a festive spirit as you walk the route along Court Avenue.

Make sure you stop by each Winter Market event because each weekend will have its own unique activities! The Dec. 4 Winter Market will have a live ice sculpting activity on-site where attendees can enjoy watching local ice sculptor, Bill Gordish, create a holiday-themed ice sculpture. This activity is located on Court Avenue from 9 – 10 a.m.

Parking Tips

Parking at the Winter Market is a breeze. There are several free and paid parking meters, lots and garages on surrounding streets, and patrons are encouraged to park along the DART D-Line route, where D-Line buses stop every 10 minutes and are free to ride. You can find more information on the Parking and Directions webpage here.

Winter Weather

Check social media for updates on weather cancellations and delays. We will always post to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to notify and update patrons and vendors of any changes prior to and during Winter Market events.

Winter Market attendees, whether residents of DSM or visitors to the region, play a crucial role in growing the small business community here. Support the ongoing DSM Local efforts by attending the Downtown Winter Farmers’ Market this year and be a part of our continued success in creating a thriving place for creators, makers and entrepreneurs who sell at this event. Learn more tips on attending here.

In November and December, experience local artists, live music and entertainment at the Winter Farmers’ Market, now taking place outdoors in the Historic Court District.

Kelly Foss

Kelly Foss is former director of the Downtown Farmers' Market in Downtown Des Moines (DSM).