BEAVERTON FARMERS MARKET, Beaverton, Oregon
12455 SW 5th St., Beaverton, OR 97005
Beaverton, Oregon is about 20 minutes from downtown Portland Oregon. The Beaverton Farmers Market is the largest farmers market in the Northwest and features the region’s finest agricultural products as well as prepared food, plants, flowers and now wine and local spirits. The produce is delivered fresh each Saturday morning and sold by the growers themselves. There is an average of 90 to 100 growers, many diverse food vendors, other natural products (like honey) plus live music every Saturday.
The market opens at 8 a.m. Today we arrived about 8:20 and were already finding parking at a premium. By the time we left around 9:45 the parking was even more limited. I suggest getting there early for the best offerings and easier parking.
I go here to photograph the color and the people. The flower vendors alone are worth bringing your gear and capturing the extreme color right in front of you while walking the 5 long lanes of vendors at the market.
Look for color. Think about using complimentary colors such as red & green. The market is also great people watching opportunities.
I don’t carry lots of gear when photographing here. If I use my DSLR, I use my 28-300mm, what I call my “travel lens”. Recently I acquired a new Fuji X100S. I love this camera and it will be my camera of choice when visiting the market. Using this camera is like a throw back to my old range finder days. It even has the retro look to go along with superb functionality.
The X100S offers almost every function that my Nikon DLSR has and as you can see takes amazing images. It’s much less intimidating to the people and vendors. I hand hold at ISO 800 to insure sharp images. Because the market can be very crowded, I leave my tripod at home. Though I use a tripod about 99% of the time, tripods do not do well here.
ABOUT THE MARKET
There are around five lanes of vendors, yes lots of vendors. Fresh vegetables, plants, flowers and flower bouquets, food and much more line the rows. The market is well laid out and contains many farmers and artisan food producers selling top quality products. Product offering vary with the season. Early in spring carrots, peas, lettuce(s), strawberries (the Hoods are the best I am told) and onions are plentiful. In a few weeks, different berries will appear such as blueberries, raspberries and marionberries. Later in the summer the blackberries show up. Corn, potatoes, peppers, tomatoes, local pears, peaches and fruit take a little longer to show up at the market. Coming to the market you find out quickly what’s really in season vs. buying products trucked in from elsewhere.
There are always many tree, herb and more vendors here. Flower growers offer displays of color that make for some great photography.
Then there’s the food. You will find fresh local fish, baked goods, practically any type of meat, candied nuts, cheese, jelly & jam, honey, syrups, organic pure juices and gelato.
Bring your appetite! The market is a good place to grab a good breakfast or early lunch. There are a number of stands selling a variety of hot and cold food. You can choose from Caribbean, Middle Eastern, Asian and Mexican food to pizza from a wood fired pizza oven. I had a slice and it had amazing flavor. You can even get gelato here. I love Fetzer’s brats and real German handmade sausage. You can get one on a stick or bun hot off the grill.
There’s plenty of coffee for those early morning visits or to keep warm on the chilly mornings in springtime. Recently the market added wine tasting (and purchasing) as well as a few distillers of spirits. Local vodka, gin and whiskey are now available.
If you load up with food, plants and flowers, there are some valet booths staffed by volunteers. You can leave your purchases there, get your car and drive up and pick them up.
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