Beevers, the successful founder of independent weekly farmers markets in Golden Hill, University Towne Center and Point Loma, decided to bring the food community together where the boardwalk meets the sea in Mission Beach.
The Point Loma Nazarene University graduate and former Internet technical professional left his job to open his first farmers market in Mission Valley in the spring of 2009.
“I did a complete 180 [degrees] with my life when I left my job,” he said. “I respect and appreciate each of my vendors. Each new market confirms that my decision was wise.”
The Belmont Park Certified Farmers Market will bring together ranchers, growers, artisans and chefs to the base at the roller coaster each Friday morning, rain or shine, he said. Residents and tourists can enjoy live music and food and drink samples as they weave through 50 local vendors selling locally grown produce, fresh meats and artisan wares directly from the source.
“The Mission Beach residents have to travel down the whole peninsula to get to Pacific Beach before they get to any kind of grocery store, so we’re having a nice, quaint farmers market for them,” said Beevers. “We’re not looking to have it huge. We’re going to keep it at an average of about 50 vendors at the most, so [residents] can come locally and get their produce.”
Some of the featured farmers, food purveyors and artisans include Elis Farm, Hopkins AG, Smith’s Farm, Papa’s Garden, Baba’s Foods, Poppa’s Fresh Fish Company and Bathing Bombshell.
“They’re all really unique, with really wonderful stuff,” said Beevers. “For the most part, we’re really looking to draw those residents that live there that want some local produce.”
In addition to shopping the weekly market, locals can take advantage of the farmers market’s unique community supported agriculture (CSA) program, which is designed to support the viability of small farmers, as well as the health of community members by offering a box of fresh, locally grown produce each week for pickup at the market.
“The way we do CSA is unique,” he said. “We have a farmers market CSA, so every farmer at my market contributes to the box. What that means is that they get a larger variety. They get a really great selection of fruits, vegetables, nuts, honey — all these different items that, with one farm, you wouldn’t be able to get that kind of variety.”
Although the Belmont Park Farmers Market CSA box is unlike others, Beevers urges everyone to find a CSA box that is right for them, no matter its source.
“I support all CSAs,” he said. “I think they’re all incredibly important. If someone finds a CSA that works better for them, then that’s awesome. Our main goal here is to support the farmers and make that the most viable situation for farmers.”
CSA boxes are $15 for boxes that feed two to three people or $25 for boxes that feed three to four people.
Beevers said he hopes the CSA box and launch of the local farmers market will also help encourage healthier lifestyles among San Diegans for a win-win benefit for all.
“We’re trying to encourage people to cook more and really take advantage of the fact that we live in San Diego, and we have a farmers market and growing season year round,” he said. “We live in an incredible place. We really should be embracing farmers markets.”
On Friday, June 7, kids ages four to 13 will have the opportunity to take part in a fruit and veggie scavenger hunt for a chance to win a VIP Belmont Park experience.
The Belmont Park Certified Farmers’ Market accepts Visa, Mastercard and EBT Market Bucks. Stop by the management booth to swipe your card in exchange for Market Bucks that never expire. For more information, visit www.briansfarmersmarkets.com.