Jason Hebert, St. Helena Farmers' Market

Many people start their Fridays with a smile and a cup of coffee brewed by Jason Hebert at the St. Helena Farmers’ Market.

I’m from Atlanta and have spent most of my life in major metropolitan areas — Manhattan, San Francisco, Atlanta again. People are often surprised to hear I’m from the South as I have no trace of a “southern drawl.” Yet my roots extend to the fertile soils of middle Georgia, where my parents were raised on farms, tending crops and rearing livestock. I have experienced that life firsthand, grounding me even as I soared into a more global existence.

I moved to St. Helena in 2013, invited by a friend who was born and raised here. She is the trunk of my St. Helena tree and she’s a farmer, which in my book means good people.

One of my earliest loves in St. Helena has been our Farmers’ Market. I don’t know why exactly, but our market is the best and I’m fortunate to call many of our vendors friends. I arrive each Friday to start the day with a smile and coffee brewed by Jason Hebert. Friends are waiting to walk the market and gather tasty items for breakfast and special dishes to be made in coming days.

I was delighted by the invitation to join the board this season and I hope to make the market as memorable for you as it is for me. I’ll soon share a little bit about my husband — an inspired chef who brings the market to delicious life at home; as well as my family tomato pie recipe and some cool things I’ve learned about dahlias.

Join us at 10:30 a.m., Friday, Aug. 9 for local perfumer Jessica Mennella’s lecture, “The Scent of Nature, Using Natural Botanicals to Perfume Our World.” Kathy Foulger of Umpqua Bank will also be sharing free ice cream from 10 to noon. And make sure to visit Farmstead in August to support us through their Corkage for Community program, with a $5 corkage fee donated for guests who bring a bottle of wine.

The St. Helena Farmers’ Market is held from 7:30 a.m. to noon, every Friday through Oct. 25 in Crane Park. For the most up-to-date information, visit us at sthelenafarmersmkt.org or follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

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Kelly Harden is a member of the St. Helena Farmers’ Market Board of Directors.