Farmers Market Vendor Profile: Sweet Mamas Soaps & More

Sweet Mamas Soaps & More is back for its second appearance at the NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market.  The company was founded in 2013 by Kim Tatum. She named her company after her goats, from whose milk she creates her products. Each morning when she would go out to milk them, Kim would call out “Hi, my sweet mamas!” and the name was born.

Sweet Mama’s products stand out because it is made from  fresh goat milk from the Tatum’s farm just east of Bend, but it also contains raw shea butter and clays.  Raw shea butter is well known as an excellent moisturizer.  They add clay to the soap for color, to boost cleansing properties, to add “slip” when used to shave with a razor to eliminate shaving rash (no shaving cream needed), and to add a creamy quality to the lather.  The company currently offers two soaps with activated charcoal which makes a great face soap for people with acne-prone skin.

In addition to soap, Sweet Mama’s also makes a great lotion using their goat milk, aloe vera juice, and raw shea butter along with oils that soaks in and soothes dry, chapped skin.  Last year, they added lotion bars for people wanting a more intensive lotion that takes a little longer to soak in.  They call it a “heel saver” because it will greatly reduce, if not eliminate, cracked heels when applied at bedtime and allowed to soak in overnight.

But that’s not all! Sweet Mama’s push-up, twist tubes of Body Balm are made using herbal infused olive oil, raw shea butter, beeswax, and essential oils – a great concoction to apply on cracked skin, callouses, minor wounds, and rashes.  Kim said, “My husband has used it for the past couple of years in place of a prescription steroid cream on his psoriasis.”  Also in a tube is the company’s Arnica Balm, made from arnica infused olive oil along with most of the same herbs as the Body Balm and essential oils that are great to apply on sore muscles and joints.  This product is great for sore muscles, plantar fasciitis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Last, but not least, Sweet Mama’s makes sell lip balm in mango, mint, orange, and pomegranate; and 3 tinted colors:  light pink, pink, and copper.

Kim said, “I research different ingredients (oils, butters, herbs, and essential oils), their reputed health benefits and their cost and formulate recipes based on what I learn.  At the Farmers Market, I enjoy meeting people who come to our booth and discussing their skincare issues so I can learn how to better meet their needs.  For example, one summer I had a couple people come by my booth who had peanut allergies in their family.  We were concerned about the sweet almond oil in my soaps and lotion and whether it would cause an allergic reaction.  In response I decided the sweet almond oil really wasn’t necessary in my soaps, but I do like it in the lotion as it is a light oil (compared to olive oil which is heavier).  So, I have replaced olive oil for the sweet almond oil in my soaps, but not the lotion.  It is this input from customers at festivals and markets that encourages me to continue learning and questioning why I use the ingredients I do.  I am frequently reminded of a saying I heard as a child, ‘The more you know, the more you learn you don’t know.’”

Kim has a passion for   researching and making skin products that use simple, natural ingredient that yield great benefits at a price that is affordable.  She says, “While there is no way to make good, natural skincare for the same bargain prices large grocery and chain stores can sell chemically-filled skincare products, I do believe it is possible to make good natural skincare that is affordable for someone who chooses to use natural versus chemical skincare.”

Come down and visit us any Saturday through September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: Rofe Designs

Roanna Fe Gingrich founded Rofe Designs in 2010, and this will be the company’s second year participating in the NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market. All of the designs for Rofe Designs clothing are hand-drawn (nothing digital!) and hand-screened. The clothing itself is ethically made that is soft and comfortable, and looks good too!

Roanna said, “I love the location of this market and the low-key feel. The quality of products sold at the NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market is unmatched for other markets this size.”

Salem based Rofe Designs is hoping to expand soon with a mobile storefront that can come to customers, with an option of holding a private Rofe party – for rewards, wardrobe expansion and even for a fundraiser. Part of the aim of this new model will be to support local and small businesses with outside products for Roanna’s craft. She is continuously working at new ways to be more sustainable and create options for giving back to the beautiful community in which we live.

She continued, “The NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market gives me a real excuse to spend more time in the Bend area, little getaway from the valley!”

Come down and visit us any Saturday through September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

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NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: Holm Made Toffee

One of our longest running vendors at the Farmers Market, Holm Made Toffee is back for their sixth year in a row. This small, family-run business was started as a hobby by Donna Holm in 2007, and is now run by Donna, who makes all the toffee by hand and her daughter-in-law Randi Holm, who manages sales, marketing and events. Donna is often joined by her other children and grandchildren who like to help, so it is a true family affair.

Over the years, the company has grow slowly but surely through word of mouth. They participate in numerous markets and events across the state and can also be found in 50+ stores in the Pacific NW.

Randi said, “We LOVE the NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market because we get to meet lots of new faces each week – as well as see familiar ones. Not only do a lot of Bend locals attend, but also a lot of tourists. We love hearing stories from our customers on why they are purchasing our candy and where it gets to travel. Last year we heard from folks taking it all the way to Europe or even just home down the street!”

In addition, the company has teamed up with many other market vendors on some collaboration projects. Jeff and Juli Labhart from Bonta Gelato use some of Holm Made Toffee’s flavors in their gelato, and so does Addy Mac’s Ice Cream in their toffee flavor ice cream.  Holm Made Toffee also uses dried lavender buds from market vendor Tumalo Lavender in their lavender toffee. Partnerships made in heaven – or at the NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market as the case may be.

Randi continued, “The market has grown A TON since I first started participating and it has been great to see what new vendors, musical acts and FUN are here in 2016!”

Come down and visit us any Saturday through September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

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NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: Pink Rakes Studio

If you are looking for something one-of-a-kind that will start a conversation, then first-time market vendor Pink Rakes Studio has it! Founded earlier this year by Stephanie Petershagen, Pink Rakes creates hand-built ceramics and sculpture that are sure to catch the eye.

From useful pieces like small plates, spoon rests and vases, to abstract masks and yard art, Pink Rakes pulls out all the stops. Creativity abounds in every piece! The best way to explain the items that you might see at the market from this vendor is to show you some photos. See below!

Stephanie said, “I like the location of the NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market on Bend’s westside and all the good vibes from the visitors and other vendors.”

Come down and visit us any Saturday through September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

 

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NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: Bucha Buena Fermentation Creations

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Coming back to the market for its second year, Bucha Buena brings visitors its local, craft kombucha. The company’s brewery is located on Bend’s westside in true micro craft fashion: it’s created in the backyard of owners’ Brooke Moore and Brit Nelson.

Bucha Buena takes local seriously as they only use real fruit to flavor their product, and everything they use is sourced in our home state of Oregon. They are looking forward to sharing their fare with visitors at the Farmers Market, as their brewery is not open to the public. So Saturday is your best chance to try out their kombucha – and more.

They said, “We are excited about the release of our new Sour Series, a hard kombucha that is 4.1% ABV, and aged in oak barrels. Our website will have tap listings for where you can find it around town.”

Come down and visit us any Saturday through September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

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NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: MaileKai Creates, LLC

Founded in 2010, MaileKai Creates makes useful and fun works of art by up-cycling all those beautiful bottles in the world. The company takes discarded bottles and uses several processes to create items that can be used again and again.

Some of their pieces are slumped (melted in a kiln) to create one-of-a-kind gifts, spoon rests, soap or jewelry dishes, serving or hors d’oeuvres dishes and much more. Other bottles are carefully cut and sanded into drinking glasses, vases, or goblets, enabling customers to re-claim their favorite bottles and turn them into useful items.

This family business is run by Robert Clark (chief bottle cutter) and Elise Clark (chief bottle slumper), plus a bottle cleaning and sanding crew made up of four teenagers: Jodi, Kai, Sami, Alex. Most of the bottles MaileKai collects are from in and around Bend, from local bars and eateries, as well as from all those recycle bins that are curbside twice a month. The team scavenges for their favorites, and also have many customers collecting bottles for them to use, saving them from the landfill.

Elise says, “We love the NWX market because the combination of Farmers and Artists makes for an interesting mix of vendors. Great food, awesome music, and happy customers always makes for a fun day.”

Come down and visit us any Saturday between June 18 – September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

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NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: ACME Hot Hog Company

A brand-new food vendor at the market this year, ACME Hot Dog Co brings hot dogs that are anything but run-of-the-mill. ACME offers grilled all beef hot dogs and veggie dogs served on toasted buns with specialty toppings such as creamy homemade mac and cheese topped with bacon, BBQ sauce, and chives.

Brendan Maier, founder of the company, said, “We love all the action at a farmer’s market and we look forward to sharing our hot dogs with Bendites and visitors alike!”

The company was founded earlier this year, and you may have seen their bright red food cart around at various events this spring. Come down and try a dog!

Come down and visit us any Saturday through September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

 

 

NorthWest Crossing Farmers Market Vendor Profile: Maragas Winery

Ground-breaking Central Oregon winery Maragas joins us at our Farmers Market for the first time this season, selling wines made and processed at their winery in Central Oregon. The winery also has two estate wines that are made with grapes grown at their Terrebonne area vineyard.

Owners Doug and Gina Maragas are looking forward to participating in the market. They said, “This market is well known for its great selection of vendors and the local-minded customers it attracts.  We are looking forward to bringing our wines to the local crowd in such a great location.  The atmosphere is fun and festive, seeming to be a perfect pair with our products.”

Doug Maragas learned wine making from his grandparents, who brought their winemaking over from Europe in 1941.  The company’s wines are made using all natural, old world proven techniques. That means no additives or chemistry, Doug just guides the grapes to express their magic in the finished wine.

Maragas Winery also capitalizes on the dry Central Oregon climate, which causes micro oxygenation (evaporation) to occur when in the barrel providing richer flavors.  Over the last 10 years, the company has experimented with many different grape varietals to determine what the Central Oregon region will grow.  They have found that their vineyard is great for Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, Gris & Meunier, Chardonnay and a few others.  Maragas Winery is just getting started with the terroir in Central Oregon and can’t wait to reveal the wines. Come check out what they can do at the market this summer!

Come down and visit us any Saturday between June 18 – September 17 from 10am – 2pm.

**This is the first in a series of blog posts giving some insight into our vendors for the Farmers Market this summer. Less than two weeks until the season starts! 

 

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Bend, Oregon Spring Festival April 8-10 in NorthWest Crossing

“sweet spring is your
time is my time is our
time for springtime is lovetime
and viva sweet love”
― E.E. Cummings

Viva, indeed! We’re doing spring right in NorthWest Crossing: April 8-10 for the NorthWest Crossing Bend Spring Festival presented by The Source Weekly. We’re loving everything about this season of renewal in Central Oregon, and many of us are ready for the warmer weather to arrive. Others are glad for the late snow that promises some great spring riding on Mt. Bachelor. Whatever your feelings are about the weather, there is no doubt that spring is a time for new beginnings, love and…festivals.

The annual NorthWest Crossing Bend Spring Festival is filled with activities for everyone to celebrate the season. The weekend kicks off with the popular Art and Wine Bop from 5-9pm on Friday, April 8 and the rest of the weekend is packed with free live music, great food and drink, and a showcase of the amazing art created right here in the region and beyond.  Everyone is invited to connect with their own artistic side for the much-anticipated sidewalk chalk art competition (sign up required). For kids, the COPA Kids Zone has arts and crafts, music, magic, dance, ponies and, of course, giant puppets. There are too many fun things to list! Click to see the full line-up!

We hope you’ll join us! Springtime is lovetime, and we’d love to celebrate with you.

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Five Ways to Enjoy Valentine’s Day in Bend, Oregon

The history of Valentine’s Day is shrouded in mystery. Thought to have its roots in a February-ish ancient Roman fertility ritual, the day as we know it is named after a Christian martyr named Valentine. Even experts don’t really know how the holiday became what it is today – a day of love, Hallmark cards, dinner dates and boxes of Sweetheart candies.

However it came into being, it is now a celebration of love from exchanges in Kindergarten classrooms to parents desperately searching for a babysitter so they can have a night out together. Since you’ve likely already missed the window for making a dinner reservation that starts before 10pm, we’ve rounded up five easy ways you can still make Valentine’s Day special in Central Oregon:

1. Stay home. Decorate your house with some sweet Valentine’s Day swag (check out the selection at our own Cutest Store Ever) and throw your own dinner party. You can pick up ready-made goodies at Tate and Tate and some fancy sweets at Little Bite Cafe, All Mixed-Up or The Sparrow Bakery. Wine from portello winecafe, and you’ve got a complete dinner and never even had to leave the neighborhood. If you have kids have them act as your maître d – they’ll have fun serving you.

2. Take a walk in the park. We have no shortage of parks and open spaces in NorthWest Crossing – and in Bend – and if this weather holds, it will be beautiful. And it is a good way to connect. A University of Minnesota article says: “According to a series of field studies conducted by Kuo and Coley at the Human-Environment Research Lab, time spent in nature connects us to each other and the larger world…. It appears as though nature inspires feelings that connect us to each other and our environment.” (You MAY want to take the walk on Saturday instead of Sunday as rain is in the forecast.)

3. Participate in a run. There are actually two runs taking place on Valentine’s Day – Central Oregon Running Klub’s Hot Chocolate Run with a start and end at *Larkspur Park* by the Bend Senior Center on Reed Market Rd. It’s free and you can even bring the canine love of your life. The Snow Wars Royal Runs will start at the Les Schwab Amphitheater Ticket Office and the trail will wind along the Old Mill District & Deschutes River, with a mixture of paved paths and groomed trails – and even few themed obstacle challenges.

4. Go to a live music performance. The Central Oregon Symphony Winter Concert Series happens to have a matinee performance on Valentine’s Day this year…so grab your love and go listen to commissioned pieces by Copland and Thomson and pieces by Liszt, Prokofiev and Wieniawski. High Desert Chamber Music’s Valentine’s Day concert is also a good option, performing pieces inspired by love and romance in downtown Bend.

5. Festival! The 2016 Oregon Winterfest will be in full swing on Valentine’s Day. The final day of the three-day festival, this is a massive celebration of winter with ice carving, the infamous Metal Mulisha, the K9 Flying dogs and much more. Pack up the family and spend the day with one another, loving on this beautiful season in Central Oregon.

So no matter how Valentine’s Day began, let’s celebrate it for what it is today – a time for love and enjoying each other!

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Make Christmas Beautiful with Ease at NorthWest Crossing

The Christmas holiday is nearly upon us! If you are starting to feel stressed, then there are some solutions to make things easier for you – just down the street in our neighborhood center!

  • Hostess gifts: Going to a party and need a thoughtful hostess gift? There’s a wide selection of gifts for the home and more at The Cutest Store Ever. If you’re hosting a party, you can decorate your home to the nines with all of Laurie’s great ideas – just stop by and check out the shop!
  • Children’s gifts: If you’re like us, many of the kids in your life have so many “things” its hard to know what to get them. Experiences! Little Bite Cafe has kids’ cooking classes every season and even hosts parties – call or come in the cafe to find out more. (We’re pretty sure they have some holiday goodies going as well!)
  • Holiday dinner: Tate and Tate Catering has full holiday meals available. Here’s the catch – you need to order by today 12/21. Otherwise, stop by their shop at the NorthWest Crossing neighborhood center for some ready-to-bake casseroles and other savory dishes to help you feed your holiday company with ease. They’re open until 3pm on Christmas Eve, closed on Christmas Day.
  • Holiday desserts: The Sparrow Bakery is once again pulling out all the stops and creating some holiday masterpieces just for you. Special order Buche de Noel, apple, pumpkin, and pecan pies, and u-bake croissants now for pick up on Christmas Eve.

Merry Christmas everyone! Looks like we will be having a white one this year!

5 Musts For The Perfect Christmas Table
5 Musts For The Perfect Christmas Table