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Crossroads Farmers Market 101

The Crossroads Farmers Market was built upon a vision: increasing access to fresh, local, and healthy foods for the underserved neighborhoods of the Takoma Park/Langley Park Crossroads, an area commonly referred to as “Maryland’s International Corridor.”

Upon opening, Crossroads became the first market in the state of Maryland (in conjunction with the Takoma Park Farmers Market) to accept federal nutrition benefits: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps); Women, Infant, Children (WIC) Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) checks; Senior FMNP; and the new WIC Fruit and Vegetable Checks (FVC). Crossroads was also the first market in the country to launch a double-value coupon program called “Fresh Checks”, an innovative financial incentive program through which the market matches federal nutrition benefits with coupons for use at market.

You may shop at market with WIC checks, SNAP, Senior FMNP, debit card, credit card, and of course, cash! The market tent is equipped with a wireless terminal (think portable ATM machine) that can be used for SNAP, debit, and credit card transactions. Simply approach the market tent and let us know how much you’d like to spend. SNAP participants will receive $1-value wooden tokens for use with any food vendor; debit and credit users will receive $5-value wooden tokens for use at any market stand.

The market also aims to create a lively, safe community gathering space for individuals and families of all backgrounds. Each week, the Crossroads Summer Concert Series provides live music from local artists sharing sounds from around the globe. And special events, including Kid’s Day/Dia del Nino, Earth Day, and cultural heritage days, are held throughout the summer. Check the events calendar for more information.

In additional to the seasonal, outdoor market, the Crossroads Farmers Market is a year-round presence in the community, conducting outreach and education; providing opportunities for beginning, refugee, minority, and/or immigrant farmers; and offering best practices to other markets in the state looking to develop similar programs.

Four seasons in, the Crossroads Farmers Market continues to grow and evolve in support of that vision of creating access, affordability, a thriving, sustainable local food system, and a vibrant, healthy community.

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