Pie making contest set for farmers' market

By Terry Harris

On Nov. 19, the Surry Farmers Market will introduce some new features geared toward Thanksgiving and Christmas, and according to Market Manager LaSonya White, one of the most exciting new additions is a Sweet Potato Pie Baking Contest.

“We just thought it would be fun!” said White, ”since Sweet Potato Pie is such a Thanksgiving specialty. Entry is free, and you basically just have to fill out the entry and submit two pies at 2:30 that day at the Pavilion for judging.  We’ll have culinary industry people as judges considering appearance and taste.  And we’ll even have prizes based on good, local things.”

“The only other rule,” she added, “is that there’s only one entry per person.  There will be a separate youth division – judged separately – for 18 and under. Judging will begin at 3and the winners will be announced at 5 p.m. and you don’t have to be present to win.”

But you do have to be present to win the hourly raffles – also FREE – and three lucky people will win hams.

“We’re going to have country hams from Meats of Virginia – formerly Edwards’ Ham Shop,” White explained.  “Everybody who comes out will get a free ticket, and ever so often we’ll have a kid pull out a ticket and if the person with the matching ticket is still there, they win a ham!”

White said that the plan is to make this one another specialty market, like Homecoming, with lots of vendors selling everything from gift baskets to holiday wreaths.

“We’ve got 19 vendors already committed,” she explained, and there will be baked goods all ready for your Thanksgiving meal, produce like collards and kale and sweet potatoes, a meat vendor selling ham and ham hocks and sausage – lots of great things for the holidays!”

“And we’ll have food trucks and picnic tables so people can come on out and eat supper there if they like while they listen to June Bug Turner on the organ up on the stage,” she added.  “So far, we have a seafood truck, a smokehouse barbeque truck with beef brisket, a soul food truck, plus a variety of local vendors who bring ready-to-enjoy food.”

 “I really am excited about this one,” White said. “It’s just a fun, safe way to get out and see family and old friends and make some new ones!  I love how it seems like the community is getting excited about our Farmer’s Market and supporting it more than ever before. It just seems like now the Farmer’s Market is really catching on and becoming everybody’s go-to place on Friday evening!”

For more information about the Surry Farmers Market or for registration information for the Baked Sweet Potato Pie contest, call 757-376-3017.