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The Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events is pleased to kick off summer with the Chicago City Markets presented by COUNTRY Financial® at celebrations on Thursday, May 11, at the Daley Plaza Market, and Sunday, May 14, at the Maxwell Street Market. Residents are encouraged to visit their neighborhood market this season to shop local and shop fresh. A complete list of city-run markets, along with dates and times are listed below and at chicagofarmersmarkets.us and maxwellstreetmarket.us.
“Chicago City Markets are farmers markets and much more,” said Mark Kelly, Commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. “With markets like Daley Plaza and Maxwell Street, the city provides residents with access to fresh and healthy produce, unique Chicago-made products, eclectic street food, unique finds and cultural experiences that bring communities together, many offering live music and other cultural activities.”
Chicago City Markets Open on Daley Plaza – Thursday, May 11
Among the activities starting at 11:30am, COUNTRY Financial® will announce the winner of the 10th Annual Reusable Bag Design Contest and then provide free, reusable bags to shoppers. This year’s winning design will be based on the theme “Give, Grow and Be Green” and will be featured on thousands of reusable bags distributed throughout the season.
The 2017 finalists are: Iveth Crisoforo, a junior at Mather High School; Lizbeth Garcia, a senior at Mather High School, and Wajeeha Gulzar, a freshman at Mather High School. The winning artist will receive a $1,000 scholarship and the first and second runners up will each receive a $500 scholarship as a financial start to their future.
“COUNTRY Financial is thrilled to be sponsoring our 10th annual bag design contest,” said Mike Fisher, Agency Vice President of Community Business Development at COUNTRY Financial. “It’s the best time of the year when our vendors and friends are back at the market with farm-fresh products, and we can fill up our newly designed reusable bag. It’s a special feeling.”
Maxwell Street Market – Mercado de Maxwell – Sunday, May 14
The Maxwell Street Market (800 S. Desplaines St.) will kick off its summer season with a celebration on Sunday, May 14, from 9:30am to 2pm with Latin-themed programming for the entire family on el diá de la Madre. The streets of the Mercado de Maxwell will feature roaming musicians and the best street food stands in Chicago. At traditional Latino mercados, musicians will entertain patrons as they enjoy the flavors and sounds of trios and Mariachi bands throughout the event. For families, the market will also present family programming, along with Mexican Loteria (B-I-N-G-O) and a hand’s on Mexican toy-making workshop.
Maxwell Street Market is renowned for the best, authentic Mexican- and Latin-style street food in Chicago, with favorites that include: tamales, banana leaf wrapped tamals, tacos, quesadillas with fresh handmade corn tortillas, elotes and corn cakes. Beverage choices include soft drinks, horchatas and other fruit flavored drinks. For the sweet tooth, market goers can enjoy sorbet, funnel cakes, baked goods and Mangonadas served in a large cup with layers of mango sorbet, mango slices, drizzled with lime, chamoy and sprinkled chili powder.
The historic street market offers an eclectic mix of foods and finds—from tools to tires, plus fresh produce, furniture/antiques, clothing, plants for the garden, rare finds and collectibles. Maxwell Street Market is open throughout the year on Sundays, 7am-3pm. For additional information, visit maxwellstreetmarket.us and follow us on Facebook at Maxwell Street Market.
The new framework introduced earlier this year, Chicago City Markets presented by COUNTRY Financial®–unite all of the City of Chicago-managed outdoor markets under one program, including Chicago’s longest running farmers market at Daley Plaza, the historic Maxwell Street Market and community markets in neighborhoods across Chicago. Across the city, Chicago City Markets sell fresh seasonal produce, flowers, prepared foods, unique Chicago-made products and, in the case of Maxwell Street Market, rare finds and retail merchandise.
Additional neighborhood Chicago City Markets take place in neighborhoods across the city from Roseland to Lincoln Square, with new locations this year in Austin and Bronzeville. Many markets serve communities with limited access to fresh produce and areas designated low-income, low-access by the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA). This year, various City of Chicago-managed market locations will accept LINK and will distribute double value coupons with every LINK purchase in a partnership with Experimental Station.
The City of Chicago-managed markets opening in May are the Daley Plaza Farmers Market at 50 W. Washington St. opening on Thursday, May 11; the Division Street Farmers Market at Division St. and Dearborn Pkwy. opening on Saturday, May 13 and the Federal Plaza Farmers Market at Adams St. and Dearborn Pkwy. opening on Tuesday, May 16. Most city markets open in June. Maxwell Street Market operates year-round on Sundays.
For additional information on Chicago City Markets’ downtown and community farmers markets, visit chicagofarmersmarkets.us. Join the conversation on Facebook, Chicago City markets on Instagram @ChicagoCityMarkets and on Twitter @ChicagoDCASE (#ChicagoCityMarkets).
The Chicago City 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, Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) and the Chicago Tribune.