One of the best ways to combat homesickness and culture shock is to get to know the place you’ve moved to. One of my favorite activities to engage with my community is the Farmers’ Market, or as it as known in C-U, the Urbana Market on the Square. Held on late spring, summer and early autumn Saturdays from 7:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. on the southeast corner of the Lincoln Square parking lot, the market is one of the best ways to find local fruits, vegetables, organic meats, Amish baked goods, candies, cheese, crafts, honey….and the list goes on. Here are some of my favorite things to see at the market:
Musicians come out to entertain the crowd and earn some cash. It’s a wonderful place to watch people and eavesdrop on lively conversations. If you go to the market to buy food, I recommend going early to avoid the crowds; if people-watching is your thing, then go later, but take a hat and some sunscreen—the sun gets hot out there! When the weather cools off in October, the market moves indoors to Lincoln Square until Christmas, and local craftspeople use the opportunity to sell their Christmas wares. It’s easy to get here by local transportation, so I encourage you to visit the market on Saturday as a way to get to know Champaign-Urbana.