San Luis Obispo Farmers Market
San Luis Obispo, CA
Submitted by: Harriet Festing
An incredible street party and farmers' market rolled into one - the market is just one part of a 6-block weekly event.
"Clouds of bright helium balloons float beside food booths that offer everything from pizza-by-the-slice to warm-from-the-oven cookies" - so says the brochure for this place. Although this market lacks the sense of purity or intimacy of other farmers' markets and is borderline tacky, I think they've managed the event well - it's certainly fun.
What Makes San Luis Obispo Farmers Market a Great Place?
It's right downtown and you can see by watching the streams of people passing, that most people walk there.
It gets pretty packed at the market and it would benefit from places to sit away from the crowds. Otherwise, it's relaxed.
There's loads to do - activities include rock bands, juggling acts, dances and puppets shows - but the best bit is people-watching. I had a video camera with me and took amazing footage of people chilling-out, dancing and eating.
The market is so diverse, it's pretty social.
History & Background
The market was started in 1983 by the San Luis Obispo Downtown Association. It was seen as a way to draw shoppers downtown on Thursday night - the one night that stores stayed open until 9pm. The Farmers' Market has since received international press coverage as well as the attention of city governments across the country. Reporters, writers and visiting city officials are duly impressed, then dumbfounded, when they realize it's held every week.
San Luis Obispo Downtown Association: firstname.lastname@example.org