Just down the road from Brick House 319 is The Lancaster County Farmers Market in Wayne. Locals call it the “Farmers Market” where it’s been a fixture on the western Main Line since 1951.
John grew up religiously going to this Farmers market every Saturday.
The farmers market is located in a brick building (circa 1970), which was formerly Penn Fruit, a grocery market. It moved to its present location in 1977.
The building does look like it had been a grocery store–way before the super-sized, chain markets of today.
Between 1951 and 1977, the farmers market was smaller and was located in downtown Wayne in another brick building. It was a hop, skip and a jump from the old Woolworth’s store. Today it houses two businesses, Gimbel Eye Associates and a nail salon (next store).
When it was at this location, John had three favorite pit stops. First, the UTZ potato chip stand where the potato chips were scooped up, placed in a paper bag and stapled. The second stop was the candy stand where they sold homemade thin mints, and the third, were the freshly-made sticky buns.
One block west of the original farmers market is this brick building in downtown Wayne, which used to be Woolworths with a pet store downstairs. It’s now The Gap.
On Saturdays, the Farmers Market is busy in the morning and early afternoon; yesterday I stopped by an hour before closing. John asked me to look for the thin mints but they’re no longer at the farmers market–that was a long time ago. Nancy’s Candy Corner has a huge selection of assorted candy and chocolate-dipped pretzels but I didn’t see thin mints.
Of course, UTZ potato chips is now a large company and is sold in grocery stores in various states. The days of having freshly made chips scooped into a bag is long over. John added, “See if you can get sticky buns.” I was in luck; the sticky buns are still around but pre-wrapped. Years ago, they were double the size and served from a large aluminum tray. They would be cut and placed in wax paper to take home to heat.
When I first entered, the pretzels and the party dogs (pigs in the blanket) were on the left. Fruits and vegetables that are second to none were on the right and a bakery, fresh flowers and fresh meats were straight ahead.
I watched the girl behind the counter place a freshly made tray of party dogs in the oven and then I considered which pretzel to try…
It’s always difficult to pass by delicious-looking cupcakes at one of the bakeries…
I rounded the corner and started down another aisle and scanned the Amish bakery with assorted cakes, breads and jams…
There’s a coffee stand for a cup of Joe and a luncheonette with tables where early shoppers can order breakfast, and for lunch, the rotisserie and fried chicken looked especially good.
And if you’re looking for an old-fashioned butcher, which is also second to none, then this is the place to find it!
The Lancaster Farmer’s Market is open Wednesday, Friday & Saturday.