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The Yankee Express

Farmers Market returns for the season

Sign welcoming shoppers to the 2021 opening day of the Grafton Farmers Market. (Courtesy of Grafton Farmers Market Facebook Page)

every Sunday – through December – from 6 a.m. until 4 p.m.
In North Grafton, Houlden Farm, the multi-generational family-owned farm that sells a variety of its produce along with dairy items, baked goods and more, continues to expand. It recently opened a food truck with farm-to-table meals. The food truck, which is located on the farm, is called Seed at the Table. This month, it also opened a weekend beer garden known as the Sunflower Shanty. As of right now, the beer garden’s hours are 5 to 9 p.m. on Fridays, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays.    
For people who love to garden, Perreault Nursery & Landscape Supply in North Grafton has an abundant supply of vegetable plants. And in addition to an array of vegetable plants, flowers, bushes, trees, mulch, fairy garden supplies and gifts, the shop sells natural/organic fertilizers, potting soil, garden soil and compost. 
Those who like to cook outdoors can find grills and cookers from Weber, Traeger and Big Green Egg at Koopman Lumber, the hardware and paint store in North Grafton. Besides selling a varied selection of items that shoppers can use to enjoy spending time outdoors, the store recently helped people to experience the beauty of nature in a different way. Along with UniBank, it co-sponsored the Bay State Trail Riders Association’s May 23 Patriotism Benefit Ride. The ride helped to fund the nonprofit’s work maintaining, restoring and enhancing Massachusetts trails for equestrians and others to use.   
The Saddle Shed, a South Grafton shop that sells horse equipment, accessories, gifts, tack and other items and services for horses and their riders, also has welcome news for local equestrians. Although the shop will be closed for vacation from July 3 through July 12, it recently expanded its hours. It’s now open Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Grafton Recreation recently announced that Silver Lake Beach will be open every day (weather permitting) from June 26 through Aug. 15. Information about hours, fees and COVID-19 restrictions can be found on the Grafton Recreation website, www.grafton-ma.gov/recreation-commission
Although enjoying the fresh air and sunshine is “hard to beat,” safely gathering with loved ones and being part of a community are also activities that we’re now less likely to take for granted.  Thankfully, summertime in the area offers the chance to experience all of them in a variety of fun ways.
Please note that this information was correct at the time the column was written. However, because the pandemic is rapidly changing things, it’s best to check the websites and social media pages of any business to see if new changes have been implemented. 
Contact Christine with your business news items at [email protected]  
By Christine Galeone
Laura Ingalls Wilder once wrote, “Some old-fashioned things like fresh air and sunshine are hard to beat.” And many people would certainly agree.
This summer, several Grafton businesses and organizations are encouraging people to experience those simple joys. They’re also helping people to experience them together. 
On the Grafton Common, people can come together to appreciate those simple joys while supporting small businesses. The Grafton Farmers Market, which is held every Wednesday from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m. on the Grafton Common, recently returned for the season. With more than 25 vendors (which vary each week), the volunteer-run market works hard to achieve its goal of providing “fresh, local food directly from farmers to consumers.” Its vendors offer a wide array of local produce, baked goods, jams, syrups, candy, natural skincare items, handcrafted gifts and more.  
The Town of Grafton’s 2021 Concerts on the Common will provide fun music-filled evenings. Held on the Common every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. starting July 14, the first concert will be performed by Beatles for Sale; the July 21 will be by Buzztones; the July 28 one will be by the Midtown Horns; the Aug. 4 concert will be given by BoomBox; the Aug. 11 one will be by The Band from U.N.C.L.E.; Big Chief will give the Aug. 18 concert; and the final performance of the season will be given Aug. 25 by the Claflin Hill Symphony Orchestra.
A Grafton business that gives people the chance to shop while embracing the summer weather is the Grafton Flea Market. The indoor and outdoor flea market, which now has both a casual restaurant and a beer garden, has recently expanded its offerings thanks to more vendors being able to safely return. It will remain open