May 4, 2015

The Season Has Arrived For Chicago Farmers Markets

Official May 14 Opening at Daley Plaza will Feature COUNTRY Financial’s 8th Annual Reusable Bag Design Contest Winner

Christine Carrino, 312.744.0573

Mary May, 312.744.0576

Chicago Farmers Markets presented by COUNTRY Financial open across Chicago this spring and run through October, at locations downtown and throughout the city’s neighborhoods. The markets managed by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) will sell fresh fruits, vegetables plants and flowers, and some neighborhood markets will also feature music programming, prepared foods and local artisan (non-food) vendors. A complete list of all the markets with dates and times can be found at

This year, all 20 City of Chicago-managed market locations will accept LINK and will distribute double value coupons with every LINK purchase. The City of Chicago, DCASE and the Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS) have partnered with Experimental Station in order to provide this greater access to fresh produce across the city, including some areas designated low-income, low-access by the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA).

“The city’s farmers markets benefit our residents and local farmers,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “With the increased number of markets city-wide, more of our residents and families will be able to purchase wholesome foods, while also supporting the region’s farms and food producers.”

The official kick-off of the Farmers Markets season will take place at the Daley Plaza Market on Thursday, May 14, at 11:30am. COUNTRY Financial will announce the winner of the 8th Annual Reusable Bag Design Contest. The winning design from a Chicago Public Schools student was based on the theme “Live, Love, Be Green” and will be featured on thousands of reusable bags distributed throughout the season. This year’s finalists, each of whom will receive a scholarship award, are: Christopher Duran, a senior at Mather High School; David Paredes, a junior at Mather High School; and Zhi Wei Tan, a junior at Lincoln Park High School.

“We’re always excited for this time of year to roll around as temperatures are warming up and local shoppers are getting anxious to see what this year’s Farmers Markets have to offer and to get their hands on the newest reusable canvas bag designed by one of our talented high school students,” said Mike Fisher, COUNTRY Financial Agency Field Executive, New Market Development.

The City of Chicago-managed markets opening in May are the Daley Plaza Market at 50 W. Washington St. opening on Thursday, May 14; the Division Street Farmers Market at Division St. and Dearborn Pkwy. opening on May 16 and the Federal Plaza Farmers Market at Adams St. and Dearborn Pkwy. opening on Tuesday, May 19. Most of the other markets open in June.

The two new market locations for 2015 are in Bronzeville at Martin Luther King Dr. and 26th St. and in Pilsen at 18th St. and Blue Island Ave. For a full list of all City of Chicago managed markets as well as over 30 independently run markets in the city, visit DCASE also operates Maxwell Street Market (800 S. Desplaines St.), a Chicago tradition of bargains and bargaining with an international flavor, open year round on Sundays, 7am–3pm. For details, visit

The Chicago Farmers Markets presented by COUNTRY Financial® are produced by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and sponsored in part by 93XRT, CBS 2 Chicago, WLS 890 AM & 94.7FM, Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), the Chicago Tribune and the Department of Family and Support Services. For more information, visit or call 312.744.3316, TTY: 312.744.2964. Join us on Facebook at Chicago Farmers Markets and follow us on Twitter @ChicagoDCASE (#ChiFarmersMarkets).


Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events

The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to enriching Chicago’s artistic vitality and cultural vibrancy. This includes fostering the development of Chicago’s non-profit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts businesses; providing a framework to guide the City’s future cultural and economic growth, via the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan; marketing the City’s cultural assets to a worldwide audience; and presenting high-quality, free and affordable cultural programs for residents and visitors. For more information, visit


COUNTRY Financial® group

The COUNTRY Financial® group serves about one million households and businesses throughout the United States and offers a full range of financial products and services from auto, home, business, farm and life insurance to retirement planning services, investment management and annuities.


Click here for the 2015 Schedule of City of Chicago Farmers Markets


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