The Midwest may be known for its cold, snowy winters, but many people forget about the diverse crops grown in the region during warmer months. As a result, Midwest farmers markets often have a rich bounty of fruits, veggies and other artisan products to experience and enjoy that are unique to our region.

While you’re planning your summer road trips, be sure to plan pit stops at these Midwest gems:

Dane County Farmers MarketMadison, Wisconsin

Dane County Farmers Market prides itself on being the largest, producer-only market in the country. This means the people selling you milk or vegetables were the ones milking the cow or picking the crop. Each week you can expect to see and meet approximately 160 producers.

Mill City Farmers MarketMinneapolis, Minnesota

Mill City Farmers Market was founded by a chef in 2006 to bring organic food to the Minneapolis area. However, what makes this market unique isn’t just the offerings, but rather its location right in between a historic flour mill and the world-renowned Guthrie Theatre. Both of these attractions offer tours, so a trip to the market can be full day’s worth of sight-seeing.

Des Moines Downtown Farmers MarketDes Moines, Iowa

With more than 300 vendors, the Des Moines Downtown Farmers Market has the most booths on our list. The markets spans more than four blocks and comes equipped with amenities like a bike valet and even has coupons available via text messaging. Be sure to rent a wagon while you’re there to maximize your farmers market haul.

The City MarketKansas City, Missouri

Looking for something that makes this farmers market special? One of the services The City Market offers is called the Tomato Taxi. Simply drop off your bounty of fruits and veggies, and then retrieve them later in your car at a designated pick-up location. The hassle of transportation is taken care of for you so you can enjoy more of the market and all Kansas City has to offer.

Omaha Farmers MarketOmaha, Nebraska

The Omaha Farmers Market has three locations throughout the city, making it by far the most convenient market to find during your summer travels. Don’t forget to check the website before heading out – it comes decked out with a harvest calendar and seasonal recipe suggestions.

Black Hills Farmers MarketRapid City, South Dakota

The Black Hills are an incredibly popular vacation spot complete with stunning scenery and Mount Rushmore – and a really great farmers market for campers and visitors. The market is located in Founders Park, a historic location that is an attraction unto itself in the heart of Rapid City.

Yellowstone Valley Farmers MarketBillings, Montana

The stunning scenery in the Yellowstone Valley speaks for itself when it comes to this farmers market. However, it also boasts of a 50 to 50 ratio of growers to food vendors, which means finding fresh produce is just as easy as finding a crepe. The Yellowstone Valley Farmers Market opens in July – just in time for your outdoor summer getaway. 

Whether you’re planning a trip to the farmers market or any other locale, the Cenex Location Finder can help take the guess work out of finding a gas station along your route. Also take a look at the Cenex Consumer Card to see how you can get more back from the miles you drive this summer. Happy travels!

Photo courtesy of FLICKR USER.

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