Saturday Morning Farmers Market in Old Town Clovis

Busy Bees Honey Farm, John and Lynette Ballis
(Photo Adam Solis, Clovis Roundup)

The Saturday morning Farmers Market runs from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in the heart of Old Town Clovis on Pollasky between 5th and Bullard.

Often overshadowed by the spectacle of the Friday night Farmers Market, the Saturday morning market continues to provide a more intimate space for the community to connect with vendors.

In contrast to the Friday night Farmers Market, which provides more of a festival atmosphere, the Saturday morning Farmers Market is a more intimate, relaxed setting. 

Saturday attendees are able to shop and talk to vendors about the fruits, vegetables and other specialty items being sold while enjoying live folk music in the background.

Some of the vendors expressed hope that the crowd Saturday morning would bring in more of variety of local vendors.

The vendors this week varied from a produce booth to a beauty boutique. One unique booth was the Busy Bees Honey Farm.

Operated by husband and wife, John and Lynette Ballis, the Honey Farm booth from Sanger came to the market to not only share their honey with the Clovis community, but to educate any attendees on the process behind making the honey and their family history making honey.

“A lot of people ask for honey because they’ve heard how it helps with allergies, and we do try to educate them. Not everyone is helped but the wildfire honeys have a lot more pollen in them than orange blossom,” Lynette said.

Lynette said that working as a husband and wife beekeeping team is something they enjoy doing and that they also hope farmers apply to be vendors for the Saturday morning market.

The Saturday morning Farmers Market provides an opportunity for visitors to buy products from local vendors, hear their personal stories and connect with the people behind the business.

Another business that was a popular attraction on Saturday morning was Rory’s Inspiration Lapidary Arts. 

Rory’s is run and operated by husband and wife, Don and Kelly Bain. Their business is named in honor of their son Rory who they lost to suicide eleven years ago.

The business consists of selling jewelry handmade by Don and Kelly. Made from rare minerals collected by Don who then cuts and polishes them. Then Kelly does the final steps of water work that produces the final product and wires the finished rock into a piece of jewelry of the customer’s choosing.

Don said he was inspired to start his business from the time he spent collecting rocks with his son.

Don said he and his wife have been coming to the farmers market for the past eight years and describe the environment of Old Town Clovis as the friendliest as compared to anywhere else.

The conversations Don has with customers has allow him to help others who have lost loved ones get through hard times is the reward that Don said keeps bringing him back.

A conversation with a couple that visited their booth during the Friday Night Farmers Market is a prime example Don said of why he continues to come to events like farmers markets.

“I was telling the guy our story and he put his hand on my shoulder and he said ‘I lost my son five years ago to suicide.’ and now we’re in contact and we’re going to be in contact so I can help them even more. It’s about helping other people to help yourself,” Don said.

Don said speaking with others was something they found rewarding because it helps other people as much as it helps themselves.

“The best thing is not about selling a stone, it’s about helping other people,” Don said.

Another unique aspect of the opportunity to show their booth to attendees, Don said, is the chance to spark interest in mineral collecting in children whose eyes are attracted to the attractive stones.

“Kids to me are the most important thing. They come to my booth and they show a high interest in stones, and I find out they have a collection of their own. I’ll tell them to come back down here next week and I’ll bring them stones from home and start another starter collection for them because I have like 2,000 pounds of stones,” Don said.

The opportunity to help youth being involved with something constructive and outdoors is an opportunity Don said he is happy to have a hand in.

The Saturday morning Farmers Market is held year round in the heart of Old Town Clovis on Pollasky between 5th and Bullard. Applications for any vendors interested in participating in the farmers market can be found on the Old Town Clovis website.

Adam Ricardo Solis has written for The Collegian as a staff reporter covering a variety of topics and transferred from Fresno City College to Fresno State where he majored in agriculture business. He is excited to incorporate what he has learned about the agriculture industry in the Central Valley into future articles while also covering a variety of other community matters.