Farmers markets are more popular than ever. They provide an excellent opportunity to talk with local food growers and producers, learn more about where your food comes from, and how it makes its way from the ground to your table. Most of them also have cool and quirky vendors selling fun things like soap and crafts.
If you like the local vibe a farmers market can provide, and you know you want to live in Florida, where you don’t have to worry about snow and sleet canceling this week’s outdoor events, check out one of these communities that have their own farmers markets.
On Top of the World – Ocala, FL
With over 10,000 new and resale homes available to buyers, On Top of the World is one of the most popular places for adults 55+ to settle. It’s located in Ocala, an ideal Central Florida spot if you love nature and the outdoors, and within an hour or two of Tampa, Orlando, and Daytona Beach. Residents here enjoy a long list of amenities and plenty of opportunities for an active lifestyle.
The farmers market is open every week and offers locally grown produce, eggs, and meats. Ocala is surrounded by farmland and horse pastures, so you can count on the wares being fresh and fulfilling. In addition to the farmers market, residents also enjoy an ice cream shop and a deli, several pools and golf courses, a sprawling clubhouse, and a state-of-the-art fitness center. There are opportunities to take classes, join groups, and participate in frequent social activities that focus on fitness, arts, sports, and culture.
The Villages – The Villages, FL
If you’re looking for something that’s more than a community, consider The Villages. With more than 56,000 single-family, attached, and manufactured homes, this is by far the largest 55+ community in Florida and the world. The Villages touches three counties and covers more than 20,000 acres of land. Its location in Central Florida is close to some beautiful small towns, including Mount Dora and Leesburg.
Known as Villagers, residents enjoy free golf for life and all of the amenities that go above and beyond what you’d find in most small cities. There’s a post office, a movie theater, retail stores and restaurants, as well as pools, lakes, clubhouses, fitness centers, and recreational complexes.
The community breaks itself up into three town squares. Farmers markets are scheduled on different days of the week in each square, giving Villagers an opportunity to do their shopping every few days. Check the community newsletter for information on when to find the farmers markets in Spanish Springs Town Square, Lake Sumter Landing Market Square, and Brownwood Paddock Square.
Pelican Preserve – Fort Myers, FL
At Pelican Preserve in Fort Myers, residents can be close to the Gulf of Mexico while they enjoy a weekly farmers market in their community clubhouse. With 2,500 new and resale homes available in a number of single-family, attached villa, and condo floor plans, there’s something for almost every budget and lifestyle. This gated 55+ community is built around a golf course, and it’s one of the first communities to be awarded the Gold Seal of Sustainability from Audubon International’s Sustainable Development program.
Residents enjoy the farmers market at the Plaza del Sol clubhouse, a 70,000 square-foot facility that hosts a number of other social events and club activities. There’s a 38-acre nature preserve to enjoy during your stroll through the vendor stalls, and a juice bar serving smoothies near the pool. Other amenities include a dance studio, an art studio, a movie theater, and a banquet hall.
Del Webb Naples – Ave Maria, FL
Active adults interested in continuing education and an on-site public farmers market should consider Del Webb Naples. Built to resemble a village, this community of 2,000 new and resale single-family and attached homes is one of the most comfortable and desirable master-planned neighborhoods in Southwest Florida.
The weekly farmers market is held every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. until April 27, 2019. Look for the tents and the stalls in the Ave Maria Town Center. You’ll find several vendors with fresh, locally grown produce, bread, honey from local bees, flowers, and gifts such as candles, soap, jewelry, and crafts. In addition to the farmers market, residents at Del Webb Naples enjoy an on-site water park, Panther Run Golf Club, a Publix grocery store, and plenty of parks and outdoor space.