Every Saturday, I have the same routine: I wake up, throw on my "John's Backyard Garden" T-shirt, and head to Missoula's Farmer's Market downtown.

The Missoula Farmer's Market has recently been divided into two separate vending areas. The Clark Fork Market (map), located along the Clark Fork River in downtown Missoula near the Higgins Street bridge, provides shoppers with locally grown vegetables, flowers, and homemade pastries and jams. The People's Market (map), located on Pine Street near the X's, is a great place to find gifts, unique decor, or even a whole new outfit.

Ever since my dad began participating in the market fun, I've enjoyed every Saturday morning from the end of April through October taking in Missoula's ultimate organic and home grown goodies. I do all this while sipping on a 12 ounce vanilla latte from Loose Caboose and munching on a homemade blueberry muffin from the muffin lady (as we call her).

Even though the market opens at 8, I tend to roll in around 9:30 to help my dad out at his stand. He runs "John's Backyard Garden" at the Clark Fork Market by the river. He sells mostly salad greens, but also provides an amazing selection of breakfast radishes, rainbow carrots (that's right, I said rainbow), green garlic and scallions, and most notably, micro greens. And yes, we literally do have a garden in our backyard.

But the Farmer's Market doesn't strictly sell vegetables and baked goods. If you head up a couple blocks to Pine Street, you'll find the People's Market, a place full of handcrafted jewelry, clothing, and my personal favorite, KETTLE CORN — all of which are Montana made.

I know I'm not alone in my love for the Saturday market. I think the people who run the  Missoula Farmer's Market Facebook page said it best:

Founded in 1972, [the Missoula Farmer's Market] is a favorite spot for Missoulians, to shop for produce locally grown and fresh picked, to meet friends, to linger with a cup of coffee and to enjoy the old fashioned charm of an open air market.

So come on down to Missoula's Farmer's Market each Saturday and support your local growers!

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