CEDAR RAPIDS — Market-goers dodged a few drizzles of rain on opening day and an odd gap in the usual footprint of the Downtown Farmers Market.
Cloudy skies occasionally broke into sun for the kickoff of the large-scale market, with mild temperatures, compared to the sweltering heat on opening day last year.
The weather was a relief after thunderstorms and even tornadoes have pounded the Midwest in recent weeks.
Road construction on Third Avenue SE created a “great divide” between vendors on Fifth Street to Third Street SE, with the bulk of the booths reconfigured to Second Avenue and Fifth Street SE.
Trains traveling through downtown Cedar Rapids also created breaks in the crowds that were often shoulder-to-shoulder.
With nearly 200 vendors, the Downtown Farmers Market, produced by the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance, is one of the largest in the Midwest.
Early season produce included spinach, kale and radishes, in addition to multitudes of perennial plants, vegetable seedlings, herbs and flowers, along with prepared foods, handcrafted items, clothing, cheese, wine, meats and more for sale.
See more photos from the 2019 opening day, below, and find a list of more than 50 farmers markets throughout Eastern Iowa on the Homegrown market list.