14 great farmers’ markets to visit throughout the Sacramento region

Photo by @olyazenko via Market at Power Inn on Instagram

The month of May brings the promise of the region’s bountiful farmers’ market season, where you can find plenty of tasty local produce, homemade food and sometimes a bluegrass band or two. Here are 14 great markets to stop by this year. (Scroll to the bottom to see a map.)

Capitol Mall Farmers’ Market

Bookended by picturesque views of the State Capitol and the Tower Bridge, this downtown market takes over a block of Capitol Mall each week beginning in May. On one side of the street, you can pick up a fresh box of fruit from Lodi’s Rhythm & Blueberries or a bag of giant spaghetti squash, beets and red peppers from Davis’ Hearty Fork Farm. Across the way, you’ll find kettle corn, baked goods and lunchtime fare from local food truck vendors like Gyro 2 Go, Big Joe’s BBQ and Drewski’s Hot Rod Kitchen. Thursdays from May 4 to Sept. 28. 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Capitol Mall between 5th and 6th Streets. 688-0100. california-grown.com

Cesar Chavez Plaza Farmers’ Market

The downtown lunch crowd goes wild for this bustling market that fills Cesar Chavez Plaza for half of the year. Pick up everything from purple poblano peppers grown in Camino and fresh strawberries from V & M Farms in Monterey to bottles of Wheel Lemonade, based in Elk Grove, and warm garlic naan from Raja’s Tandoor. For a behind-the-scenes look at the market, every other Wednesday from May 17 through October you can follow Oliver Ridgeway, executive chef of Grange Restaurant & Bar, on a guided tour that wraps up with a three-course meal across the street at the restaurant. Wednesdays from May 3 to Oct. 25. 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Cesar Chavez Plaza. 910 I St. 688-0100. california-grown.com

Davis Farmers’ Market

This twice-weekly market series at Davis’ Central Park combines everything we love about spring and summer: food, drinks, music and the great outdoors. Try samples of Nicasio Valley Cheese Company’s Foggy Morning, which was named the best fromage blanc-style cheese made in North America in 2015. On warm Wednesday nights, sip one of Sudwerk Brewery’s West Coast lagers and dance on the lawn to a local bluegrass band. Or stop by the market early Saturday morning when kids can get their faces painted and take home a balloon animal. Saturdays year-round (8 a.m.-1 p.m.); Wednesdays through Oct. 25 (4:30-8:30 p.m.). Central Park. 3rd and C Streets. Davis. 530-756-1695. davisfarmersmarket.org

Downtown Roseville Farmers’ Market

Every Saturday, Vernon Street Town Square in downtown Roseville comes alive with tents and booths where you can shop everything from fresh kale to cute, handmade cards. Stop by Capay Organic's stall to pick up rainbow-hued carrots and purple potatoes, feed your caffeine addiction with beans from small batch roaster Dogs Drink Coffee, or grab a bottle of rosemary-infused olive oil and sweet peach balsamic vinegar from Big Paw Olive Oil Company in Campbell. Meanwhile, kids can cool off and play in a fountain that spouts streams of water from the ground. Saturdays year-round. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 311 Vernon St. Roseville. 774-5300. roseville.ca.us

El Dorado Hills Town Center Certified Farmers’ Market

This market in the heart of El Dorado Hills surrounds a small lake near Town Center Boulevard and welcomes farmers from the foothills and beyond. Look for baby squash and zucchini from Somerset Farm in Winters, feta cheese from Jollity Farm in Garden Valley, cookies from Bonnie Jo’s Gourmet Macaroons and plump cherries from Hooverville Orchards in Placerville. After stowing the morning haul, you can grab breakfast with a view of the lake at nearby Sellands Market-Café. Sundays from May 21 to Oct. 29. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. El Dorado Hills Town Center. 4364 Town Center Blvd. El Dorado Hills. 530-622-1900. eldoradofarmersmarket.com

Bouquets of flowers at the Cesar Chavez Plaza Farmers' Market (Photo by Sactown Magazine)

Fair Oaks Sunset Farmers’ Market

Bring your pooch to this dog-friendly market in Fair Oaks to sample blueberry oatmeal doggie cookies and peanut butter-flavored treats from Bubbas' Doggy Bakery in Roseville. Then pick up vegan, pork or jalapeño-cheese tamales from Emma’s Tamales for your own snack and shop gourmet sea salts and locally harvested loose-leaf teas in flavors like “Sweet Dreams” from El Dorado Hills' Naturiffic. The market hosts a variety of seasonal events throughout the year, including pumpkin carving and a Halloween costume contest in the fall, with categories that include “scariest costume” and “best-dressed dog.” Wednesdays through Nov. 29. 3-7 p.m. 8101 Sunset Ave. Fair Oaks. 484-7000. ilovemyfarmersmarket.com

Historic Folsom Farmers’ Market

Saturday starts early in downtown Folsom, where cyclists can find free valet parking and everyone can stroll through over 80 farmer and growers’ stalls. Stop by Exeter’s Lindcove Ranch for fresh oranges, mandarins and lemons, or grab one of their popular bottles of grapefruit and tangelo juice. The market also offers onsite chair massages and live music by the Roy Thorpe Blues band, and will hold its annual peach festival on August 5. Bonus: much-loved Karen’s Bakery, with its many breakfast pastries, is just a block away. Saturdays year-round. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 915 Sutter St. Folsom. 484-7000. ilovemyfarmersmarket.com

Market at Power Inn

For its second year, this Friday market has moved to a new location on the corner of Power Inn Road and 14th Avenue with plenty to offer the lunchtime crowd, like live music, fruit and veggie stands and food trucks. You’ll find Petaluma Creamery cheese, fresh sourdough bread from Upper Crust Baking Co. in Davis, Tajín-topped fruit cups from Frutas Primavera food truck, and vegan samosas from Sophia’s Mini Kitchen. Roseville’s Forest Bailey will play acoustic sets, while you play with puppies up for adoption at the Sacramento SPCA booth. Fridays from May 12 to Oct. 28. 10 a.m- 2 p.m. Power Inn Rd. and 14th Ave. 453-8888. powerinn.org

Midtown Farmers’ Market

Ninety farmstands, flower booths and hot food stands occupy this lively market at the heart of midtown, which also offers bounce houses, scavenger hunts and craft-making for kids and yoga workouts for adults. Buy your produce and learn how to cook it too, with monthly chef demos from Patrick Mulvaney of Mulvaney’s B&L or Matt Masera of Hook & Ladder Manufacturing Co. Check out grass-fed lamb and pork from Sheridan’s Coffee Pot Ranch, cool down with a piña colada Italian ice or munch on a pineapple-honey crepe from Happy Crepes as you saunter through the farm stalls. Saturdays year-round. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 20th St. between J and K Streets. 442-1500. midtownfarmersmarketsac.com

Take your pick of local produce at the Midtown Farmers' Market (Photo courtesy of Midtown Farmers' Market)

Natomas Farmers’ Market

This market launched last year, on a smaller scale, in conjunction with Natomas’ First Friday festivals and has now grown to a Saturday event of its own with produce from local farms, food trucks and family activities. Look for the Wandering Boba food truck to nab some popcorn chicken or pomegranate bubble tea, sip Track 7 beer and stock up on jars of honey from Woodland’s Sola Bee Farms, with flavors including wild blackberry and Sacramento Valley wildflower. Cyclists can also park their bikes at the Natomas-based Bike Doc pop-up stand for a springtime tune-up. Saturdays from June 3 to Sept. 16. 8 a.m.-12 p.m. North Natomas Regional Park. 2501 New Market Dr. 688-0100. california-grown.com

Oak Park Farmers’ Market

At this gathering in McClatchy Park, market-goers can start their weekend off with some sun salutations at a free yoga class or dance to live music from the likes of local guitarist Lauren Wakefield. Afterward, shop for everything from gruyere-sesame sourdough bread from The Drunken Loaf and juicy tacos from Masa Guiseria to handmade bath bombs from Blossom Bathhouse. Foodies and small growers can show off a talent in the market’s second annual skill swap in August, during which they’ll compete for titles like “largest homegrown fruit or veggie,” “smallest egg,” and “most tasteful food art.” Saturdays from May 6 to Oct. 28. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. McClatchy Park. 3500 5th Ave. 704-2843. nwsac.org

Old Town Elk Grove Farmers’ Market

More than fresh produce awaits at this Elk Grove market, where shoppers will find dahlia bouquets from KC Flowers, handmade brown-sugar-and-coffee-scented body scrubs from Carmichael’s Irie Body skincare and goats milk soap bars from Shawn’s Soap Shop. There’s no shortage of food, however, with ready-to-eat options like garlic spreads from Elk Grove’s Garlish and seasonally decorated sugar cookies from I Scream for Icing. Sundays year-round. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 9615 Railroad St. Elk Grove. 691-2489. elkgrovecity.org

Sacramento Central Farmers’ Market

Arrive early at Sacramento’s largest year-round market, spread out over 70,000 square feet under Hwy 50, where locals show up by the hundreds to peruse the offerings from over 100 farms and purveyors, like purple, orange and green cauliflower from Riverdog Farm in Guinda and apple-cherry cider from Smit Farms in Linden. While you’re checking off your weekly grocery list, keep your eyes peeled for local chefs like Randall Selland of Selland Family Restaurants and Patrick Mulvaney of Mulvaney’s B&L, who are known to browse the stalls seeking inspiration. Overhead, you’ll see the expansive Bright Underbelly mural, which was painted on the underside of Hwy 50 last year. Sundays year-round. 8 a.m.-12 p.m. 8th St. and W St. 688-0100. california-grown.com

West Sacramento Farmers’ Market

On Thursday nights, the Barn in West Sacramento will host over 20 farmers’ market booths, which include juicy mandarins from Yuba City’s Feather River Farms, feta and habañero cheese from Jollity in El Dorado, and a live music lineup that has previously included rock group Hans and the Hot Mess and ukulele-drum duo Musical Robot. On the first Thursdays of every month, little ones can hop on bounce houses and learn a new kitchen skill at cooking demonstrations. And on the last Thursday of each month, stop by for the DigIn! Dinners series with 3 course meals prepared by local chefs like Kelly McCown of The Kitchen. Thursdays from May 18 to Aug. 24. 4:30 p.m. until dusk. 985 Riverfront St. West Sacramento. 371-7042. westsacramentofarmersmarket.com

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