Takoma Park seems to attract people who like to live their lives a bit off the beaten path. Artists, musicians and activists all hide out in bungalows and Victorian houses on its hilly tree lined streets. (I should know because a lot of my friends live there.) Perhaps the town's proximity to the University of Maryland has something to do with it. Back in my college days, downtown College Park might have had a small town feel by day, but weekend nights were often giant parties with bikers and students co-mingling (and fighting) in dive bars on Route One. Takoma Park, just down the road, was an easy commute and out of the frat kid fray.
Now Takoma Park has an amazing farmer's market founded in part by a quietly wonderful man named John Hyde. He was not one to brag, (the last time I saw him, he was wearing a duct taped barn coat) but his passion brought true change and innovative thinking to the market place way ahead of the curve. He came up with ideas to feed the less fortunate from farm to table before that was even a catch phrase. (Just yesterday WAMU ran a piece on Farmers' Market Economics, and John's name came up more than once.)
The market is open every Sunday from 10-2, but this week it will be operating at the west end of a giant throw down known as the Takoma Park Street Festival. Two large stages flank either end of town with another in the middle- food and craft vendors shoe horned in between with outstanding local music of all kinds from 11-5. Free. Rain or shine. The music schedule and links to the bands can be found here.