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City Market offers superb food

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Restaurants present worldly cuisine

Tucked inside an area known as the River Market, the City Market is an expansive outdoor marketplace located north of downtown at Fifth & Walnut, just off the banks of the Missouri River. This area was essentially the land from which Kansas City, originally Town of Kansas, got its start. The market, which has been around since 1857, is the 6th Top Area Attraction as deemed by the Kansas City Business Journal.

The City Market is home to one of the most unusual museums in the region. The Steamboat Arabia Museum has recovered cargo of the “Great White Arabia,” which sank in the river more than 140 years ago. Originally built in 1939 and renovated in 1990, the City Market offers a ton of shopping and dining opportunities. Just about anything can be found at the shops in the City Market. There is a wide variety of merchants offering ethnic wares, from African apparel to authentic Mexican pottery, which lends an international flair to the heartland. The shops are open daily.

On Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays the City Market’s open-air, year-round Farmer’s Market offers homegrown produce, herbs, plants and baked goods galore. The same groups are back every week, occupying the 144 stalls that the market offers. Almost 35,000 people visit daily. Admission is free.

This is the largest farmer’s market in a six state area.

If you are looking for the best produce, arrive around 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Wednesdays and Sundays. But if you are looking for the bargains, go around 2 p.m. or 3 p.m. when the vendors are ready to move product. The City Market is the place to go to grab your fresh vegetables, fresh meat, herbs and spices. The vendors are jovial and more than happy to assist you as needed.

Some terms used in the City Market are organic and natural. Anything sold as “organic” must be certified as adhering to the USDA national organic program standards. Use of the term “natural,” however, is unregulated and some vendors have been known to use this term to try to get people to buy from them over organic vendors.

“I love knowing that my money is going towards local farmers, who raise their crops naturally without taking short cuts, like pesticides, that damage our environment,” said sophomore Political Science student Parker Webb.

Parking is tough, especially on Saturdays. No matter what time you arrive, parking will be an issue. It is all street parking. Coming on the more relaxed Wednesdays and Sundays would be your best option.

Dogs are not allowed within the City Market Square per Kansas City ordinance, which states one exception: “Dogs serving in official ADA capacity are exempt from this policy.”

The City Market is on a bus route. Just hop on the bus at Brookside Boulevard and 51st Street and take the 58 toward 3rd street and Grand. You will be dropped off just two blocks from the market.

cfiles@unews.com

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