The Athens Farmers Market opens bright and early Saturday morning: it’s the 12th year for the farmers market in Bishop Park. Upwards of four dozen vendors are expected to take part in this year’s market. From Kimberly Davis, Athens Farmers Market… The 12th year of the Athens Farmers Market kicks off Saturday, March 23, from 8 a.m. to noon at Bishop Park. Around 45 vendors will participate this year, said Market Manager Sarah Thurman. Exciting new vendors include Joe Nedza with Mad Dawg Doughnuts and the Bear Hug Honey Company. “We love how the market has become a staple of a great Saturday in Athens and have been working to make it a more robust experience for the customer,” Thurman said. In addition to the diverse selection of fresh produce (greens, turnips, rutabaga and more) and food and product vendors, the Athens Famers Market will also feature local arts and crafts vendors, children’s activities (including the Little Athens Pop-up Garden & Market), and collaborative painting of the music tent’s backdrop. Furthermore, new, full-time Market Chef Landon Bubb will be on hand to offer cooking demos. “Our chef will be preparing free, weekly meal plans that will be sent out in our weekly email and available at his cooking demo booth,” Thurman said. “He’ll be highlighting one of his weekly meals at the booth every Saturday so you can sample what his locally sourced, seasonal meals taste like and find the very products you need to make it at home within the market!” Al produce is either Certified Naturally Grown or USDA Certified Organic, locally grown and sold by those who grow it, according to Thurman. The Athens Farmers Market runs through Dec. 21 at the Bishop Park location. 'We hope to see the market continue to become a more welcoming and inclusive space for all all,” Thurman said. “Our market will never be wholly strong and healthy until every member of our community feels like the market is their space.