In spite of this week's strange snowstorms, the generally warmer, longer days of late indicate summer's return. But what really signals the beginning of summer for us is the return of farmers market season. Here, four Front Range markets that will keep your kitchen stocked with local and organic ingredients until autumn.
Vendors have already set up their tents for the season along Boulder’s cozy 13th Street, featuring everything from Colorado wines to locally-made hot sauce. Hit the Rollin Greens  food truck for organic takes on Mexican and Asian classics. Then grab a cup of joe at Pekoe  before strolling the busy block to hunt down some ingredients for dinner. Saturdays, 8 a.m., Apr 6—Nov 23 and Wednesdays, 4 p.m. May 1—Oct 2. 13th Street, Boulder.
This bazaar-style farmers market features live music and rotating expos each week. After your shopping, take a free horse-drawn carriage ride through historic Golden. Don't leave without pie from the popular My Mom's Pies  or a dog treat from Lyon's Dog Bakery (better yet, bring your pooch with you—he'll have company). A credit card booth allows cash-strapped shoppers to purchase market bucks that are redeemable at all vendor stalls. Saturdays, 9 a.m., Jun 1-Oct 5. 10th Street, Golden.
The other half of Boulder County Farmers Markets , Longmont's market shares many of the same company affiliations with its Boulder counterpart—yet has half the crowd. Choose from a diverse selection of fresh veggies at Aspen Moon —a farm often represented on the seasonal menus of Frasca  and Salt Bistro —and pair them with a handmade pasta from Pappardelle's Pasta . Saturdays, 8 a.m., Apr 6—Nov 2. 9595 Nelson Rd., Longmont.
One of four locations within the Metro Denver Farmers Market , the Southwest Plaza market offers consumers in the southern ’burbs a great selection. Our go-to stands include Forté Farms —which boasts delicious, delicately-flavored honey—as well as Snow Creek Ranch  with its flavorful slabs of Angus beef. Saturdays, 8 a.m., May 4—Jun 12. 8501 West Bowles Ave., Littleton.
—Image courtesy of Boulder County Farmers Markets