While northern Wyoming may not automatically be associated with fresh produce, a variety of efforts to support local farmers, agricultural producers and other crafters of homemade goods are alive and well in Sheridan and surrounding communities.
For instance, one of the local school districts ditched the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s school lunch program in favor of more locally grown foods, and the Wyoming Legislature passed a bill in 2015 that will allow the sale of home-grown food products and raw milk in the state.
Some of the most visible — and fun — efforts to support the local food movement are the weekly farmers markets held in several locations in the area.
The Sheridan Farmers Market, sponsored by the Downtown Sheridan Association, is held every Thursday from 5-7 p.m. on Grinnell Plaza in historic downtown Sheridan from June through early October, with a Fall Festival finale to cap the growing season.
Local growers and artisans display and sell fresh produce, breads, baked goodies, jams, honeys and arts and crafts. Each week, musicians provide festive music and a variety of children’s activities and demonstrations also keep the evening entertaining.
The goals of the market are to: increase farm and ranch profitability to preserve the region’s agricultural lifestyle, to offer a low-cost marketing opportunity for small producers and artisans to encourage the local entrepreneurial spirit and to create a direct connection between vendor and consumer to encourage the mutually beneficial exchange of ideas and knowledge.
The events draw a large crowd and foster social interaction in the community.
Landon’s Greenhouse and Nursery also hosts a farmers market each Saturday starting in March. From 9-11 a.m., all are invited to enjoy and purchase fresh produce and artisan items.
The towns of Dayton and Ranchester also hold farmers markets. Residents in both towns are currently working toward providing more permanent farmers market spaces and events.
• Location: Grinnell Plaza in Sheridan and Landon’s Greenhouse, located at 505 College Meadows Drive in Sheridan.
• Days: The Sheridan Farmers Market is held every Thursday from 5-7 p.m. June through early October. The Landon’s Greenhouse farmers market is held each Saturday from 9-11 a.m. beginning in March.
• Websites: www.sheridanfarmersmarket.org; www.landonsgreenhouse.com.