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SOS: A Tale of Two Markets

October 28, 2012

Sometimes the press releases come in fast and furious. Other times they come in at a trickle. And honestly, there are some that I just can’t get excited about which you will never see.

On the flip side, there are some that I’m really into, but by the time Sunday rolls around the stories are all yesterday’s news. And sadly, you miss out on those too. Maybe one day I’ll get better about writing shorter stories and putting up multiple posts per day. But for now I like the rhythm of the blog.

All of this is to say that today I’ve actually only got one official press release to share, but there is another local promotion which also involves a market that I think you will be interested in learning more about. So even though Price Chopper didn’t actually send me any official materials on the matter, you will still hear about it today on Sell Out Sunday: A Tale of Two Markets.

Big News from the Schenectady Greenmarket

Schenectady Greenmarket To Feature Expanded Prepared Food Location

Schenectady Greenmarket is pleased to announce that the market will return to its indoor home, inside Proctors (432 State St.), on Sunday, November 4, 2012, running through April 2012. This year marks another important development for the market, which takes place every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., as it will now include an expanded food court in Key Hall across the Arcade.

With this expansion into Key Hall, Schenectady Greenmarket will be able to provide customers much better seating and dining options, a wider range of community events and demonstrations, and a larger range of vendors and products at the market. Schenectady Greenmarket will continue to have vendors in traditional locations in Robb Alley and the downstairs Education Center at Proctors.  Visitors to the market can enjoy prepared foods in Key Hall including Eastern European, Cajun, Caribbean/Jamaican, Peruvian, Moroccan and Vietnamese cuisine, as well as paninis and coffee.

“Key Hall is an absolutely gorgeous space where we’ll have plenty of room for our prepared food vendors, and plenty of seating so customers can enjoy music and a meal,” said Betsy Henry, Chair of the Board of Directors. “I can’t wait to see it filled with vendors and shoppers.  It has been great to work with Proctors and Mazzone Management to make this happen.”

This winter, Schenectady Greenmarket will host 73 vendors, including those selling vegetables, herbs, fruits, nuts, dairy, meat, poultry, eggs baked goods, confectionery, processed foods, prepared foods, wine, honey, syrup, crafts and gifts. New this season is Pura Vida Fisheries, offering wild-caught fresh New York state seafood. Vendors produce all that they sell.

In addition to vendors of local foods and artisanal goods, the market features live music, cooking and gardening demonstrations from community experts, children’s activities and a community table. Opening Day of the Winter Market will feature Running the River, a four-piece band playing classic country, rock, folk, Celtic, blues, and fiddle tunes, all day on the main market stage in Robb Alley. Rick Sacchetti of Americana group The Anonymous Figg Leafs, will play from noon to 2 p.m. in the Education Center.  The indoor market boasts a variety of musicians and community groups throughout the season. Please visit www.schenectadygreenmarket.org for an updated calendar, as well as parking and vendor information.

“Opening the indoor market will mark our fourth anniversary,” Henry said. “We’ll have lots of fresh fruit and vegetables plus meat, cheese, wine, baked goods and other tasty treats. I love the community atmosphere of the market, and knowing that we’re supporting local farmers, bakers, artists, and other vendors.”

Big Deal From Price Chopper for Thanksgiving

The competition for the grocery dollars of the Capital Region continues to intensify. Maybe down the road that will have some kind of negative impact. But for right now, it’s pretty sweet. Especially if you are a consumer.

Well, that is, unless you are a loyal customer of a small local market, in which case you may see your favorite butchers and other staff whisked away by the big money pouring into the region.

Price Chopper cut back on its gas savings plan to provide even lower prices to consumers on food products. Locals were nonplussed to be losing out on this benefit. So to capitalize on the public sentiment Shop Rite opened their own low priced gas station adjacent to their Albany store.

It’s getting ugly.

But now it’s coming up on Thanksgiving time. Have you been into a grocery store before Thanksgiving? It’s madness. This is the one time of the year that a lot of people think it’s a good idea to actually cook a meal at home. I suspect it kind of feels like January 2 in a health club to those people who exercise throughout the year.

Anyway, competition for those holiday dollars is intense, and it’s not unusual to see stores giving away free turkeys for those who spend a certain amount of money in the market.
ShopRite will give you one if you spend $400 in their stores between October 14 and November 22. And while that might seem like a lot of money, it’s really not should you shop there weekly.

Price Chopper’s counteroffer has me floored.

They are offering a free 10 to 22 lb. grade A frozen whole turkey with just a $75 purchase, and a coupon. Now if you are in the trading radius of the Bethlehem, Johnston Rd, Colonie, Madison Ave, Delaware Ave, Glenmont, Twenty Mall and Westgate stores you should have received your coupon in the mail already. If not, I hear they should be available at the stores themselves (but you should call to check before you go).

Sure, the turkey is some industrially produced joint of meat. It comes from a large operation out of the south called Raeford. And like most large producers of factory foods, they’ve had their issues.

Is this something I’m going to serve to my family for Thanksgiving? No. But I have plenty of freezer space, and having a whole turkey in the freezer is like money in the bank. Since it’s free, I may even use it as an experiment to make the Thompson Turkey that I’ve always dreamed about, but never wanted to risk ruining a perfectly good bird.

Because while I may care about animal welfare and eating clean food, I’m also a sucker for a good deal. And this is just about as good as they get.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 28, 2012 11:33 am

    If you ever DO attempt the Thompson Turkey I’d like to be in on that- you’ll need an extra hand for chopping.. I read about it years ago (I think it was an article torn from GOURMET) and it seems fascinating. The stuffing, at least, sounds superb. BTW- I recall that the writer of the article said the coating releases better if you oil the bird first.

  2. October 28, 2012 3:17 pm

    Fish at the Greenmarket! I’m so excited! This is excellent news.

  3. October 28, 2012 4:48 pm

    Wow, I am floored that you are ready to sacrifice your ethical animal husbandry and no-weird chemicals standards to save a buck. Of course, so am I. I tend to slip a Price Chopper bird into our spare freezer while we serve a virtuous bird for Thanksgiving, then sneak it onto the smoker months later when there is less turkey angst.

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