The invigorating chill kept visitors strolling from merchant to merchant to stay warm against the swirling gusts buffeting the Calexico Farmer’s Market at Crummett Park on Dec. 29.
Still, shoppers agreed it was a good day to be in the open air. Perusing a variety of wares, Victor and Rosa Nieblas were walking Chunki, their female English Bulldog.
“We’re here to support the Farmer’s Market,” said Victor. “We got a little bit of everything: jicama (the yam bean), broccoli, cauliflower and plums. And it’s inexpensive so you can’t beat it. It’s a win-win.”
Added Rosa, “We come to the Farmer’s Market as often as we can.”
Clutching an enormous stack of books she just purchased from the Calexico Library’s stall of paper and hardbacks Michelle Melendez arrived from Heber to stock up on classic and potboiler titles to replenish the book bin donations she has in her yard.
“It’s for my little free library on the lawn so it spreads the reading,” said Melendez. “I just wanted to take advantage of the Farmer’s Market and books are a favorite item.”
Library volunteers Naomi Salazar and Ismael Alvarez were doing a brisk business as book lovers demonstrated a preference for hard copy rather than Kindle ebooks.
“It should be a good day. Our books are just 25 cents for adult titles and 50 cents for children’s,” said Salazar. “But this is a great way to meet people.”
In between sales of hand-made caps, scarves, shawls and baby blankets, Sandra Tauler, director of the Calexico Community Services Department and organizer of the Farmer’s Market, reminded patrons market days continue on Jan. 12 and 26. She was working on her crochet pieces, a craft she has done since she was 10 years old.
“It’s very relaxing. You get to be creative and you can earn some extra money doing something you like,” she said. “It’s been at least 10 years since we started a crochet club, every Thursday at 4:30 p.m. We invite anyone who wants to learn or share knowledge. I’ve learned so much more since we began.”
Also busy was Hildy Carrillo, executive director of the Calexico Chamber of Commerce. Carrillo was selling a fair amount of jewelry, bracelets, rings and necklaces she finds at cross-border shops.
“I’m a Frida Kahlo (Mexican painter) collector (likeness on pendants and necklaces) so I try to promote the Frida merchandise,” she said. “I’ll buy it in Mexicali and it helps other artists. And then I re-invest it for my artist supplies.”
Carrillo works in acrylics painting abstracts she produces mostly on the fly. She reminded everybody to visit the annual Black & White exhibit at the Carmen Durazo Cultural Arts Center in January.
Scooping up numerous items from Carrillo and Tauler in a post-Christmas shopping splurge was resident Jose D. Garcia.
“I live nearby and I saw the app about the Farmer’s Market on my phone,” he said. “I came down to give them a boost in spite of the cold. These will be gifts for my granddaughter in Calexico.”