Boulder Farmers Market Named Best in the U.S.!

Burlington, Peachtree Road, Wednesday Downtown and Dane County Farmers' Markets also winners

According to the Farmers Market Coalition, a farmers market is "a public and recurring assembly of farmers or their representatives, selling directly to consumers food which they have produced themselves." The explosion of the farm-to-table movement in the U.S. has led to a steadily growing number of markets – more than 8,100 registered in 2013.

  • University District Neighborhood Farmers Market

    Open Saturdays, year round, Seattle's University District Farmers' Market is known not only for its selection of fresh fruits, veggies, cheeses and artisan food, but for the unique stands showcasing "wild things," such as: stinging nettles, miner's lettuce and exotic mushrooms, as well as unique berries: saskatoons, elderberries and huckleberries. Other unique and savory treats found there include: salmon jerky, tasty empanadas, spicy tandoori, organic jams and fine wines and craft beer.
    Photo courtesy of John Loo / Flickr

  • Davis Farmers Market
    Davis, Calif.

    California's Davis Farmers' Market lures visitors throughout the year with farm-fresh fruits and vegetables - including certified organic produce - and meats, seafood, chicken, flowers, plants and baked goods. In addition, you'll find wine and freshly prepared food, market baskets and global cuisine at the popular International Food Faire. For children, there's a carousel, face-painting and special appearance by Dilly Dally the Clown. Live music by local bands showcasing Blues, Folk, Bluegrass, Pop/Rock lends a party atmosphere.
    Photo courtesy of Davis Farmers Market

  • Green City Market

    Chicago's Green City Market has been showcasing "sustainable practices" since it started in 1998 next to the Chicago Theatre. Since then, it has morphed into the city's premier farmers' market, drawing more than 175,000 customers per year - many of them local chefs and restaurateurs. The popular market operates at the south end of Lincoln Park, May - October and in the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, November - April. Fruits, vegetables, meats, poultry, dairy, baked goods and prepared foods highlight local, fresh and sustainably raised products.
    Photo courtesy of Dave LaFlamme

  • Ferry Plaza Farmers Market
    San Francisco

    On any given day, you're apt to find some of the city's best known chefs selecting from newly picked farm produce, artisan baked goods and freshly prepared foods at San Francisco's Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market. A favorite with locals and tourists since 1992, the tri-weekly market - located in the historic Ferry Building at the base of Market St. on Embarcadero - boasts sweeping views of the Bay and draws some 25,000 shoppers to its bountiful in-door and out-door stalls.
    Photo courtesy of Amanda Lynn Photography

  • Santa Fe Farmers Market
    Santa Fe

    What began with a handful of farmers selling produce in the 1960s has blossomed into New Mexico's largest market - and one of the most widely recognized in the US. More than 150 vendors offer fresh local produce, while a collection of shops sell wine, tea, coffee, chocolate and gifts. The Railyard Artisan Market - open since 2009 - showcases a host of artists and local crafts including pottery, paintings, sculptures and jewelry. Café Fresh is the place for lunch, coffee and snacks in between purchases.
    Photo courtesy of Dianne Stromberg

  • Dane County Farmers' Market
    Madison, Wis.

    Touted as the "largest producer-only Farmers' Market in the country," this popular twice-weekly market in Madison showcases some 300 vendors throughout the year, selling agriculturally related items from Wisconsin. Fresh goods ranging from fruit and vegetables to meat, cheese, flowers, plants and bakery items line the edge of the State Capitol grounds. Local chefs are drawn to this popular market for their staples. Across the street, arts and crafts vendors offer colorful handicrafts, while street musicians serenade shoppers, adding to the ambiance.
    Photo courtesy of Bill Lubing

  • Wednesday Santa Monica Farmers' Market
    Santa Monica, Calif.

    When California Certified Farmers' Markets (CFM) were first established in 1978, they became an overnight success. On any given Wednesday, some of Los Angeles' top chefs and restaurateurs can be found poring over the fresh fruits, vegetables and baked goods at the Santa Monica Wednesday Market. Open year round from 8:30 a.m. - 1: 30 p.m. it is considered southern California's largest and most diverse grower-only farmers' market and draws some 9,000 shoppers to its bountiful stalls every week.
    Photo courtesy of Santa Monica Farmers' Markets

  • Peachtree Road Farmers Market

    Atlanta's Peachtree Road Farmers' Market has been the largest producer-only farmers' market in Georgia since it opened in 2007. Every Saturday from mid April to mid December - rain or shine - the market showcases some 50 weekly vendors with their abundant array of fresh fruits and vegetables, in addition to a host of cooking demonstrations. Local artists showcase their talent - including wearable art - alongside artisanal foods ranging from salsas to tamales and other gourmet treats and coffees. 
    Photo courtesy of Sara Craig Goodell

  • Burlington Farmers' Market
    Burlington, Vt.

    Even Vermont's frosty winters don't deter Burlington's Farmers' Market from providing a colorful abundance of fresh, locally grown produce, meats, cheese, sweet and savory snacks, flowers and homemade crafts. Since 1980, the market has welcomed visitors in City Hall Park during the summer months with more than 90 stands overflowing with "shop ops." When the proverbial "frost is on the pumpkin" the Memorial Auditorium welcomes vendors with an array of hardy produce, seasonal goods, handicrafts and more.
    Photo courtesy of Burlington Farmers' Market

  • Boulder Farmers Market
    Boulder, Colo.

    What started as the brain-child of a few local farmers in Colorado in the mid 1980s with a few tables on which to sell their fresh farm produce, has burgeoned into one of Boulder's most popular - and successful events. Today, some 150 farmers gather at the Boulder Farmers Market from early April to late November, offering fresh fruit and vegetables and unusual produce such as European lettuces, golden beets, seedless watermelon and white eggplant.  Flowers, plants, fall décor, potpourri and hand-made soaps are other favorites.
    Photo courtesy of Boulder County Farmers Market

USA TODAY 10Best's panel of food and travel experts narrowed down the field to their top 20, and for the past four weeks, our readers have been voting daily for their favorites. The results are in and we have a winner! It was a battle of the Bs, but in the end it was the Boulder Farmers Market that beat out Burlington Farmers' Market for the top spot.

The top 10 winners in the category Best Farmers Market are as follows:

  1. Boulder Farmers Market - Boulder, Colo.
  2. Burlington Farmers’ Market - Burlington, Vt.
  3. Peachtree Road Farmers Market - Atlanta
  4. Wednesday Downtown Farmers' Market - Santa Monica, Calif.
  5. Dane County Farmers’ Market - Madison, Wis.
  6. Santa Fe Farmers Market - Santa Fe
  7. Ferry Plaza Farmers Market - San Francisco
  8. Green City Market - Chicago
  9. Davis Farmers Market - Davis, Calif.
  10. University District Neighborhood Farmers Market - Seattle

A panel of experts picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote. Experts Bernadine Prince (Farmers Market Coalition), Eric Grossman, Megy Karydes, M. Linda Lee (10Best), Akila McConnell (The Road Forks), Larry Olmsted (Great American Bites) and Kim Sunee were chosen based on their extensive knowledge of food and travel.

Additional nominees for the title of Best Farmers Market included the Charleston Farmers Market in Charleston, S.C.; Coventry Regional Farmers’ Market in Coventry, Conn.; Crescent City Farmers Market in New Orleans; Dupont Circle FRESHFARM Market in Washington; Durham Farmers’ Market in Durham, N.C.Eastern Market in Washington; Portland State University Farmers Market in Portland, Ore.; St. Paul Farmers' Market in St. Paul; Sweet Auburn Curb Market in Atlanta and the Union Square Greenmarket in New York.

10Best and USA TODAY extend their congratulations to all the winners.


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Alert The Experts

Bernadine Prince

Eric Grossman

Megy Karydes

M. Linda Lee

Akila McConnell

Larry Olmsted

Kim Sunee

Michelle da Silva Richmond