Day 42: Detroit Eastern Market

Detroit Eastern Market. Photo by Danielle Turcotte.

When shopping, most people typically try to search for the most nutritious and freshest foods.  These days, it is difficult to find those natural products without breaking your bank.  In the heart of downtown Detroit located off of Russell Street, one can find everything they are looking for at the Detroit Eastern Market.

Photo by Danielle Turcotte.

Every Saturday, 40,000 people head to the one of a kind venue. With a vast selection of antiques, food vendors, flowers, restaurants, apparel, pottery, and more, it makes the Eastern Market the largest open-air market of its nature in the United States.  Public market hours are from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday’s year round and starting July 12th it will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday’s as well!  The Eastern Market attracts all types of Michigan people, some being professors from Wayne State University, city-dwellers, college students, families and many more.

Unlike any ole’ grocery store, at the 120-year-old famous market you enter into a complete edible adventure.  The reddest of peppers, kiwi, bounds of strawberries, sharp cheddar cheeses, delectable pies, spices, pastas, and even whole slabs of ribs can be seen by walking through the market.

Cas De Angelis. Photo by Danielle Turcotte.

Cas De Angelis showcases his authentic homemade Italian foods and pastas in Shed Two of the market at Pasta é Pasta.  De Angelis came over to the states in 1972 from Italy.  “This is definitely way different and more hectic than back home, but I like it,” he said.

What makes the market so unique is that it appeals to everyone from a wide range of ages. Besides all of the exceptional food and market vendors, there are cooking demonstrations by area chefs, musicians, magicians, karaoke at the nearby restaurant Bert’s Place, and a magnificent selection of flowers.

At the Detroit Eastern Market, it seems like every day is Flower Day! From the most unusual orchids, to snapdragons, to shrubbery and hanging baskets, the streets are filled with a beautiful array of offerings.  It is Detroit’s very own Garden of Eden.  Flower Day is the Sunday following Mother’s Day and is the market’s largest event, bringing in 150,000 people annually.

Photo by Danielle Turcotte.

James Rettell drives an hour every Saturday to bring his alluring selection of flowers.  Rettell, owner of Rettell Farms in Armada, Michigan, has been coming to the market since 1939. Hundreds of flower growers from throughout Michigan, Canada and even other states fill the market with their prized assortments every week.

Whether you need some ingredients for tonight’s dinner, want to enjoy live music, or just looking for that perfect dahlia to make your neighbors jealous—Eastern Market is the perfect destination to go.  So what are you waiting for?  Your adventure awaits! ~Danielle Turcotte, Regional Director

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Photo by Danielle Turcotte.

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The Awesome Mitten was born when I moved back to Michigan from Nashville, TN in September 2010. Almost immediately, I became frustrated. I couldn’t figure out why there weren’t more Michigan residents singing our states praises! I was so irritated, I wrote a Letter to the Editor. Three weeks later, I had started a Facebook page, a Twitter account, and a landing page for the website, determined to do something to make Michigan residents aware of all the cool things going on in their own state. Email me: alex@awesomemitten.com