LaVell Edwards Stadium Farmers Market, run by BYU Dining Services, offers a stage to aspiring musicians and a friendly environment for small local businesses. Each Thursday performers play from 3 to 7 p.m. while students, staff, and visitors admire art, sample fresh produce and shop homemade creations.
Accompanied by her guitar and Peruvian box drum called a cajon, Bethany Larsen did exactly that on Thursday, Sept. 6.
Larsen said she first applied to play at the Provo Farmers Market and after facing difficulties getting a spot, turned to the Stadium Farmers Market. The Provo Farmers Market runs every Saturday at Provo’s Pioneer Park, June through October. Provo’s market has a more intensive vendor application process and is much larger than the Stadium Farmers Market, according to Larsen.
“They were super nice and immediately set up a schedule with me playing almost every Thursday. They also provided me with a microphone and cords, which I don’t have,” she said.
Larsen explained that though she has original songs, she mostly plays crowd pleasers. She also frequently invites people to come up and play her cajon while she sings. She plans to introduce more of her original songs as the season progresses.
While Larsen performed, a Santaquin farmer named Kent Pyne sliced up apples from his farm and served apple cider slushies. Pyne is a fourth-generation fruit grower and has been a continuing vendor at the Stadium Farmers Market for seven years.
Pyne said his great-grandfather started farming in Orem in 1906. During the ’70s, his great-grandfather bought land in Santaquin, which is where Pyne’s farm settled.
Pyne’s apple cider slushies are unique to his booth. A few years back, Pyne said he visited his brother in Atlanta, Georgia, who introduced Pyne to the idea of apple cider slushies.
Using his freshly picked apples, Pyne puts the apples into a large grinder. The apples then go into a hydraulic ram that separates the pulp from the liquid.
Pyne explained adding different apples changes the flavor. Honeycrisp, he said, is one of the better apples to use because it has the most juice.
“A lot of people here aren’t really familiar with the apple cider slushies. Since I make cider, I figured I’d try the slushie thing,” he said.
While drinking slushies, visitors can view local business vendor’s booths featuring a wide variety of items such as rings, quilts and — in one case — knitted and crocheted creations.
Lochsley Allred, a Stadium Farmers Market vendor of five years, said she began knitting hats using a loom when she was a teenager, often knitting during class. After friends and classmates took interest, she began to sell her work, using YouTube video tutorials as her source of inspiration.
Crystal Blodgett, who shares the booth with Allred, had her side of the tent decorated with various crocheted items ranging from cacti to coin purses.
Hanging on the walls were large doilies stretched onto frames, which Blodgett said is a loose interpretation of a traditional dreamcatcher.
Blodgett said she learned how to crochet from her mother and grandmother as a 12-year-old and spent years experimenting and testing what she could crochet.
“I see something. I want it, so I make it. Crocheting turned into me saving money by making things I normally would have bought,” Blodgett said. “I would also give things away as presents and I was getting a lot of positive feedback, so I decided to sell. I’ve always wanted to sell at a market so this is like a dream come true for me.”