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Farmers Market offers fun and fresh produce for entire family

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Farmers Market offers fun and fresh produce for entire family

Nicholas Grabowski checks out the action while Emanuel Batres focuses on steadying himself on the playground at Library Park.

JASON CAMPBELL/The Bulletin


POSTED July 16, 2009 2:17 a.m.
Not even the stifling summer heat kept the families away from a Manteca Farmer’s Market gathering that celebrated children here in the community.

Hundreds of people turned out for the weekly summer gathering Tuesday afternoon at Library Park, visiting their favorite fruit and vegetable vendors and taking their children around to the various attractions that provided more than enough entertainment for a hot summer day.

For two-year Manteca resident Robert Johnson, who only started attending the Farmer’s Market events this year, it was a perfect opportunity to share a laugh with his grandson, Carson Rich, on the cool grass in Library Park.

“We come out here for the fruits and vegetables, and today I’ve had fun enjoying the afternoon with my grandson,” said Johnson. “It’s good to have things like this here in the community where you can get out and meet different people and experience things right here in your own backyard.”

Over at the combination “bounce house” and slide, youngster Zane Bryan — donning his Batman suit — was all smiles as he sprung through the aerial attraction and bounded down the slide before making his way back through again.

Bryan’s mother, Alana Robin’s, one of the directors of Manteca Youth Focus, said events like Tuesday’s child-centered Farmer’s Market were a great asset to parents during the lull of the summer.

“I think that things like this are just perfect for the summer when you can come out and relax and let the kids have a good time,” Robins said after the Manteca Youth Focus performers entertained the crowd. “It’s a good thing for Manteca as a whole.”

Even with the mercury hovering above the century mark, regular customers paced back and forth among the dozen vendors providing everything from sweet corn to freshly picked fruit, toting bags full of produce with them as they navigated the streets.

Manteca Boys and Girls Club Education director Mark McCool said the event gave parents the chance to come do their shopping and at the same time give their kids something fun to do as well.

“We’ve had a great turnout here today with lots of parents stopping by the booth to get information,” McCool said while looking over the stacks of pamphlets and informational sheets about the Boys and Girls Club he had prepared. “I think that in today’s economy people are looking for ways to enjoy themselves without spending a lot of money, and coming to things like this, where they can find options like the Boys and Girls Club, is a great way to achieve that.”
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