How to navigate the Minneapolis Lyndale Farmers Market

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The Lyndale Market of the Minneapolis Farmers Market system is the largest farmers market you will find in the Twin Cities. If you go on a Saturday or Sunday morning during the summer, the number of people can get a bit overwhelming. But don’t let that stop you from checking it out. Here is my advice for getting there and what to explore.

Before you go: Minneapolis Lyndale Market

  • Open daily year-round
  • 6:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • 312 East Lyndale Ave North, Minneapolis, MN 55405
  • Underneath an awning, but it is outside

What to bring

  • Cash. Not all the vendors take credit cards. And it’s just easier to use cash when you are at a farmers market. A non-bank affiliated ATM is available on-site.
  • A reusable bag for your goodies.
  • If you have small children, a stroller. For the most part, the Lyndale Market is stroller and wheelchair friendly. Maybe leave the double-wide stroller at home, though.

What to leave at home

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Rules aren’t just made up to make your life harder. They exist for a reason. Leave your dog at home.
  • Your dog. They’re not allowed. It may feel like a great place to bring your pooch, but there’s a lot of food sitting out and a lot of people. There are a lot of signs prohibiting dogs, but yet, I saw a few. I love dogs, but folks, leave them at home.
    • If you are running errands and have you dog, consider leaving them at the Dog Wellness Club, which is at the Lyndale Market. Note that they are only open until noon on Saturday and Sunday.

Parking

  • The market itself runs right along Lyndale Avenue, which runs parallel to I-94. There are parking spots underneath the 94 bridge, but there aren’t many, and with pedestrians, they can be difficult to get to. My advice would be to park at a meter just east of the market. Put the intersection of Holden Street and Royalston Avenue in your GPS. It’s less than two blocks away and you will avoid all traffic. The meters in the area take credit cards. Most have a 2 hour limit on Sundays, but if you want to stay longer, park a bit closer to Target Field — you will find meters with 10 hour limits.

It’s two parts

  • On the north side of 3rd Avenue, you will find the produce, the flowers (for the most part, see below), and the traditional food you would expect a farmers market to sell.
  • The south side of 3rd Avenue is the Farmers Market Annex. It’s mostly comprised of non-food vendors, along with a kids’ area, usually complete with a bouncy castle and live music.

What you will find

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Take a picture with Lyndale Market chicken.
  • Minnesota grown produce: rhubarb, green onions, etc
  • Minnesota made foods: salsas, breads, sausages, etc
  • Produce that obviously isn’t grown in Minnesota at incredibly inexpensive prices: bananas, grapes, watermelons
  • Food and beverage you can buy on the spot: breakfast burritos, egg rolls, coffee, donuts, etc
  • Non-food items: soaps, clothing, kitchen utensils, etc

Don’t buy everything at the first vendor you see

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Multiple vendors will sell the same item. The quality isn’t always the same.
  • Whenever I get to the farmers market, I get excited when I see prices, especially for produce. A big, beautiful stalk of rhubarb for $3? Sold! Many vendors will sell the same things and typically they are the same prices, but the quality can shift from vendor to vendor. Do a walk through before you pull out your wallet.

Check out the indoor flower mart

  • It’s slightly hidden, but if you’re looking for bouquets of flowers, check out the indoor flower mart inside the building next to the Annex. Just note that they weren’t the cheapest prices I saw at the market the last time I went.
  • In addition to flowers, the indoor flower mart was selling big birch logs for just $10.

Warehouse 94 is unfortunately closed

  • Next to the flower mart was a store called Warehouse 94. It sold products from Target that were in damaged boxes, among other things. Unfortunately, it is permanently closed.

Once you’re done

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Parallel is just a block east of the Lyndale Market.
  • If you want to extend your time downtown, check out Parallel, a coffee shop and cafe just a block away from the Lyndale Market. They serve brunch Saturday and Sunday from 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
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