As a mother, Erin Jones is always searching for ways to feed her family healthy meals for a reasonable price. As a small business owner, she’s always looking for ways to support other local businesses. For Jones and her family, The Market at Pickwick Place is the perfect marriage of the two.
The Pickwick Place is a lot of things, including a market, event center, a working farm and soon-to-be shop for local artisans and vintage vendors in Bucyrus, Ohio. When you arrive at The Pickwick Place you are greeted by 3 large brick barns. The first houses the Market, where they sell all of their locally grown produce, grocery products and bakery items. The second barn is home to the Loft, a popular wedding and event venue. And by June 14th, the third barn will open its doors as The Stalls, featuring up to 60 “stalls” showcasing area artisans and vintage vendors.
Jones and her family’s journey with The Pickwick Place, however, all started with the Market.
As a local photographer, Jones partnered with Pickwick Place for marketing photography last summer, and this was the first time she experienced all that the Market had to offer.
“It quickly turned into a weekly visit for my five-year-old and I over the summer,” Jones said. “She would pick out new vegetables she had never seen or we had never tried before, and I would figure out how to cook them. It’s fun to have that learning experience with my daughter.”
For Jones, this is the best part of the Market. She enjoys learning about and trying new things, and the Market’s large and unique selection of local fresh fruits and vegetables is the perfect way for her to experiment with her cooking.
“I just learned how to cook butternut squash after I picked one up at Pickwick Place for a good price,” she said.
The Market’s reasonable prices keep the Jones family coming back. They need healthy food, but they don’t want to break the bank.
“A lot of people don't eat healthy because they say it costs a lot, but at Pickwick, it doesn't. It doesn't cost any more than running a family of four through a drive-thru.”
The prices are something Jones never expected. She wanted to try the Market because she wanted to support a fellow local business and knew she would get fresh, local produce, but she expected that would likely come with a large price tag.
“The first time we went, we went up to the register with a ton of fruits and veggies, and I was like ‘oh, here we go…’, but I was pleasantly surprised. I got so much for not a lot of money.”
Jones prefers the Market over other grocery retailers because of its locality. She expressed how much better the vegetables from the Market taste as opposed to a chain retailer.
“It’s good food that you know is fresh. It’s not mass produced. It’s all locally sourced and seasonal. And I like that it’s run by a team of local people. Ethan, the farmer, is bringing in vegetables, and Laura, the business owner, is making sure everything is well-done,” remarked Jones.
Some of her family’s favorite staples from the Market include: corn on the cob, tomatoes, fresh berries, wide selection of hot sauces, jam, peanut butter, salsa, bouquets of flowers, and dog treats. Her daughter’s favorite? The slushie machines!
“The slushies are all-natural, and the flavors vary from season to season, depending on what fruit is best at what time of year,” explained Laura Stuckey, one of co-owners of The Pickwick Place. “We have cherry, peach, and strawberry. Our cider slushie is the most popular.”
The cider slushie gets two thumbs up from Jones’s five-year-old because of the taste, and it gets two thumbs up from Jones because of the free samples.
The Market also features a seasonal food truck where visitors can enjoy homemade sandwiches and lunches with their all-natural slushie, making the Market a true experience you just don’t want to miss!
The Market is also known for their freshly made doughnuts, homemade bread, and bakery items that are all free of preservatives. Their flavors and selections change with the seasons to ensure year-round freshness.
As Jones visited the Market more and more, she realized it offered an even bigger experience than she had initially thought. In addition to the wide selection of produce, a food truck, and other foods readily available, the Market also hosts summer festivals.
The Jones family attended Pickwick’s Sunflower Festival last July, which will be taking place again this summer. They enjoyed wagon rides and face painting, ate at the food trucks, and made their own sunflower bouquets.
The family is looking forward to the Strawberry Jamboree coming up the weekend of June 7-8 because of their fantastic experience at the Sunflower Festival last year. The Strawberry Jamboree will feature live music, wagon rides through the grounds, face painting, arts and crafts, strawberry recipes, strawberry milk and ice cream, strawberry fritters, and many more delicious strawberry treats from the food trucks at Pickwick, all made on-site.
In addition to the Strawberry Jamboree and Sunflower Festival, The Market is excited to also add a brand new festival this fall with Flannel Fest.
If that wasn’t enough, Strawberry Jamboree also kicks off the farm’s pick-your-own season. This year visitors will have the ability to pick their own strawberries, pumpkins and, new for this season, apples!
Taste the value of locally grown produce any day of the week at the Market, and be sure to come out and enjoy the Strawberry Jamboree on June 7 and 8 for the full market experience.