As I walked through Bogert Park for the Tuesday evening Bogert Farmers Market, I passed dancers adorned in costumes, children and dogs running through the grass and climbing through the playground and a crowd of food trucks. Families throughout the market were running into neighbors and friends and coworkers as they shopped for local fare.
As the parental figure in the Bozeman farmers market scene, the Gallatin Valley market has been serving the community for 40 years, and acts as such. The atmosphere is quieter, more subdued, and more focused on the product. At only twelve years, the Bogert Park market acts as the rambunctious teanager, catering to the young families and college students of Bozeman who want a bit of socialization, music and excitement with their organic broccoli and home-grown beef.
With a sign at the pavilion doors stating, “No dogs unless they can be carried,” it’s easy to see the Gallatin Valley Farmers’ Market is all about the business of a local market, while Bogert Farmers Market invites any and all participants through the booths, four-legged or two.
According to the owner of Nana’s Baked Goods, who sells at both markets, “Bogert is crowded with young people and young families.” She went on to say, “The Gallatin market is better, for me. People come out on Saturday mornings to buy. The Tuesday market is more for socializing. People go to see their friends, eat dinner, hear music.”
Connor Brooks, an MSU student, brings his dog to the Bogert Park Farmer’s Market every week. He said, “Whenever I go with Teddy, people always want to meet him and talk to me. I like the Bogert market because everyone is nice.”
Gabe Kissell, another student, said, “I liked Bogert better; I thought it had a better atmosphere.” He said, “The Bogert market had more quality produce, more organic options.”
With more space in the Haynes Pavillion at the Fairgrounds, produce covers only a portion of the outside booths: with the rest of the booths dedicated to various Bozeman artisans and artists.
At the Saturday market, community member Danny Farr said, “There’s more art than produce, but I liked looking through it. It was nice to see local work.”
Despite the different atmospheres, both markets are continuing an important Bozeman tradition. According to the website, “The Gallatin Valley Farmers Market has been serving the community for 40 years.” In 2011, it was even voted the best Montana farmers market and strives to win the vote again this year.
The Bogert website reads, “Since the early 70’s a farmers market has been held at Bogert Park and we are excited to continue that tradition.”
The Gallatin Valley Market occurs every Saturday, Jun. 21- Sept. 13, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. in the Haynes Pavillion at the Gallatin Fairgrounds.
The Bogert Farmer’s Market is held every Tuesday, Jun. 3- Sept. 23, 5 – 8 p.m. at Bogert Park on South Church Avenue.