Gresham, widely known for its wealth of berries, has a long history rooted in agriculture.
Gresham once boasted a multitude of farms, which grew various cane berries, strawberries, and blueberries. With the abundance of farms, canneries became a necessity. For generations, one could make a living growing or processing the bounty that Gresham offered.
The seeds of the GFM grew from the foresight of Polly Casterline, who at the time was the Legislator for District 10. After visiting Europe, Ms. Casterline was enamored by the charm of how local farmers and merchants operated markets through street vending. It was through this vision that the beginnings of the Gresham Farmers Market were cultivated.
Throughout the country, the popularity of farmers markets grew during the 1980’s, in part because people wanted a stronger relationship with the farmers who grew their food; the people of Gresham were no exception. The city of Gresham, Polly Casterline and other local citizens worked together to establish the GFM in 1986. During that first season, the market was located in the parking lot of the Gresham City Hall, and over the next 12 years the market moved to a handful of different locations. In 1999 the market found its current home, on 3rd street between Main and Miller.