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Best Market Time of the Year

As the summer solstice passes it marks the start of the best time of the year when plump fresh red tomatoes pop up at the market side by side with the juicy and sweet strawberries.

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Come out and get them while the gettings good!

While you meander through the market, your mouth watering from all the sweet smells and your eyes passing over all the fresh, local produce, and locally sourced prepared foods, don’t forget to pause by Michael Shyka’s table of exquisite water-colored silk apparel as well as home goods.

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Come on out and greet your favorite vendors, and keep your money local!

Come Visit Dick next Saturday (6/15)!

Come visit Dick of Dick’s Baking on Saturday June 15th from 8 on into the late afternoon at Bell’s IGA’s Customer Appreciation at 6 Stillwater Avenue, Orono, Maine after the market.

He will be there handing out samples of his pies and pickled goods, showing his appreciation for you!

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Siberia Farms Milk Delivery

Siberia Farms of Hermon, Maine now delivers their milk door-to-door, flooding back the memories of old-fashioned milk deliveries. WLBZ Bangor interviewed Ed Morsehead of Siberia Farms as well as one of their many happy customers on this topic, resulting in this video.

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Michael Shyka in the Spotlight

The Bangor Daily News ran a MaineFrame special on our very own Michael Shyka and his beautiful silken designs. It’s great to see local artists spotlighted, especially Michael!

Make sure you check out the article, and stop by the market to check out some of Michael’s designs – they are sure to please even the most discriminating tastes.

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Tea Time with the Holmes’s

I’ve been waiting oolong to have a great tea. Here’s an interview with some of the best tea merchants this side of the Orient.

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How did you start working with tea? 

We did a lot of reading books and online material to get a feel for what it would take.

What made you want to work with tea? 

It was out of frustration.  We could not find a good supply of loose leaf tea in our area and a minimal supply of decaffeinated teas.  There was no quality, no variety.  We had to travel to Portland and Boston.

How did you get to where you are today? 

We don’t feel we’re very far yet. We still have some planning to do.  Still, it took constant effort to not give up.  There were road blocks at every corner but we didn’t give up.

Is there anywhere else you’d like to go with your business? 

We have a vision of opening a retail store where we not only offer quality loose leaf teas but all the accessories that go with it.  And eventually to have a tea cafe where we offer tea brewed by the cup or pot and yummy pastries.

Have you worked with or learned from anyone significant? 

We are very much self-taught.  Both of us have sales experience but there’s more to tea than just liking to drink it so we had a lot to learn.

Could you list some of the teas you offer?

We offer the basics like, ceylon, darjeeling,oolong, rooibos, gunpowder, dragon’s well and herbals. Then we have fun flavors like peach apricot, blueberry, sweet pumpkin spice, chocolate mint.

From your teas, what sells best or is most liked?

During the Summer, it’s peach apricot hands down.  Since Fall started, it’s been, chocolate mint, sweet pumpkin spice and apple fig.

Are there any teas you sell that are significantly healthy or have remedial powers?

Tea in general has lots of health benefits.  All loaded with antioxidants, minerals and vitamins.  Different types of teas offer different benefits.  Dan decided that he wanted the benefits of all the different types of teas in one cup.  He blended a tea that has oolong, black, green and herbal teas.  He called it vitalitea.  It tastes good and has sold really well.

What are your favorite teas?

Dan’s is iced peach apricot.  I have such a hard time with a favorite.  My biggest decision in the morning used to be what to wear and now it’s which tea to drink.  In the summer, I go for iced fruit teas, when not feeling well, green tea with ginger added, in the mornings, orange potpourri or yerba mate with mint, afternnoon is for darjeeling or cream earl grey.

How can people best reach you?

People can reach us many ways, whatever is their favorite way to communicate.

By Phone, call or txt: 223-4249, email: teamaineia@gmail.com through our website: www.teamaineia.com or facebook, like our page.

Where other than the European Market are your teas sold? 

We have a selection at the Winterport Winery and we participate in events like the Maine Harvest Festival when possible.

Is there anything else you’d like to say? 

We are blessed that so many people are rooting for us to succeed.  At first, we were unsure if anyone but us would be interested in having better tea options available in our area.  The response was fabulous and cemented our commitment to continue to work towards making high quality loose leaf teas more accessible in our area.

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I like the idea of tea by the pot – good luck guys see you at your cafe soon!

Interview with Elaine’s Basket Cafe

Here is an interview with the sweet as her donuts Elaine Poulin of Elaine’s Basket Cafe.

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How did you get started with the Cafe? 

I worked for 30 years in State government and I’ve always wanted to own my own business for years.  I truly am enjoying this more than any job I’ve had.  A lot of work but very fullfilling.

What about food made you want to work with it? 

I was born and raised on a potato farm with all the animals possible and we worked all the time bringing in food and storing things in the summer for winter months.  We were always in the kitchen – family of 8 kids so we always had stuff to do to prepare meals and clean house.  It was what we did and we learned to enjoy it.

How did you get to where you are today? 

Worked in an office setting for 30 years and had part time jobs waitressing in restaurants also, so I always fantacized about owning my own restaurant.  When I moved back to Maine after being in Florida for 13 years I knew it was time to do it.

Is there anywhere else you’d like to go with your business? 

Yes, I would like to be in more convenient stores selling my product and also doing mail orders and internet orders also.  We would like to expand and offer more to the people in the future.

Have you worked or learned from anyone significant? 

My Mom was a jack of all trades.  She always used to say anything is possible if you put your mind to it and do it.  She was right because when you have a dream and you believe enough you can make it happen.  I used to thumb through cookbooks for enjoyment and always try new stuff and my Mom was very supportive of that.  She owned a sewing business and people would come pick up or drop off their clothes and I would give them samples of what I was baking and they would always say – you should open a bakery.

Could you list some of the things you offer at your Cafe? 

We have an awesome breakfast, eggs benedict, omelets, crepes, pancakes, muffins, croissants, homemade breads and much more.  We have a wide variety of donuts and bakery items.  We have people that drive far to get to our place to eat breakfast.

From what you make, what sells best or is most liked? 

People love our donuts and cinnamon buns.  We make donuts daily and fresh cinnamon buns a few days a week and they are a hit.

How did you get into making baskets and how did your hobby work its way into becoming part of the Cafe’s name?

I’ve always had a love for baskets because we picked our potatoes in the baskets and they always fascinated me.  I took up basket weaving 30 years ago and pretty much taught myself and have loved it ever since.  I used to do art shows in Florida and when I got here I opened the restaurant, I am also selling them in the gift shop area.  That is also the reason I have basket in my business name.

What is your favorite food and/or dessert? 

My favorite food and dessert is ice cream.  I also have an ice cream shop in the cafe because I enjoy eating ice cream so much.  What more does one want when their is ice cream to eat?

How can people best reach you? 

I am located in Milo and you can reach me at the shop which is at 24 W. Main St, in Milo but we will be moving downtown right on Main street.  My phone number is 207-943-2705.

Is there anything else you’d like to say?
Owning your own business is alot of work but very much worth it.  Everyone should follow their dream because that is what makes life worth living and what I live for is to make someone happy everyday.  Some days it’s many people which makes this world a better place to be in.  How can you not be happy eating some comfort food.  Loving what you do is not work.

How are your donuts so delicious?

Everyone of them is hand cut and filled with love.

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Fisher Farm Podcast

This is our first podcast in which we interview Fisher Farm on MOFGA’s apprenticeship program. They will talk about how they got into farming, why they have apprentices, and why apprentices are useful in getting their produce to you. Enjoy the podcast.

If you are still interested in MOFGA’s program here is some more info on the following program, the journey person program:

After the apprenticeship program a striving farmer can continue their study of sustainable agriculture through the journeyperson program. In this program, the journeyperson chooses a mentor who will watch over and check up on the new farmer.

The journey people begin to work on their own farm and crop, if applicable, within this program. There are many benefits to this program including mentorship, technical assistance, business planning, and help with getting established.

The journey people are provided with free access to any of MOFGA’s resources including events, workshops, and conferences. They also receive an educational stipend of $500 per year, which can be spent on supplementary classes, workshops, conferences, reference books, and anything that is educational and useful to a farmer. The journey people also receive a group discount at FEDCO and Organic Growers Supply and have access to MOFGA’s Organic Farmers’ Loan Fund.

According to Dennis Fisher of Fisher Farm, as seen in the video, the best part of the apprenticeship program is after the apprentices leave and work their way to owning their own farm. He along with Beth Haines, has kept in touch with all the apprentices who worked on to farm and visits their farms regularly, remaining a source and guide to his former apprentices.

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Get to know your local market and what it has to offer.

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