San Marco Plaza farmers market draws shoppers, strollers, businessmen on sunny Fridays in Lakewood Ranch

dgraham@bradenton.comMarch 2, 2013 

LAKEWOOD RANCH -- They came on bikes, in baby strollers, with canes and in Florsheims.

The sunny weather drew a small but steady flow of Lakewood Ranch neighbors and visitors Friday to the weekly San Marco Plaza farmers market where assorted vendors offer products including food, literature, pets and plants.

Three businessmen stopped by for lunch and to have their knives sharpened, but ended up buying olives from vendor Jean Pierre Brocardi, a native Tunisian who formerly owned a restaurant in France.

"Our office is right around the corner. It's nice, I like food. I love olives and fresh produce so that's what I'm here for," said Stewart Carlin of Neal Communities.

Vendor Eric Donaldson of Sarasota goes salmon fishing with his friend in Alaska, then brings the catch back to the market to sell along with fresh scallops native to Alas

ka. "It's sustainable and the best resource in the world," said the market regular.

A centerpiece on the market is the Humane Society at Lakewood Ranch, which will also be the beneficiary of the upcoming Run for Their Lives challenge during the market at 9 a.m. March 15.

Competitors will run to eight clothing racks with 800 to 900 pieces of clothing on them. The person with the most items on when time is called will win a wine and cheese basket, but everyone who competes will get to keep all of the things they are wearing at the end.

To enter, contestants need to contact 2nd Ann Rose, a designer consignment boutique at 941-799-4213 or by going by the store at 8225 Nature's Way, Suite 107, in Lakewood Ranch to sign up. Cost is $30 a person, all of which goes to the Humane Society at Lakewood Ranch.

The same Friday, March 15, the farmers market will sponsor a bounce house and Easter egg hunt for the children.

Dee Graham, Herald reporter, can be reached at 941-748-0411, ext. 7027, or tweet @DeeGrahamBH.

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