A new shopping center contrasts with the homespun charms of Los Angeles's Original Farmers Market
You couldn’t build the Farmers Market today. No researchwould ever suggest that the public would flock to a tightly packedgroup of food stands and souvenir shops, with nothing better forvisitors to sit on than green folding chairs that look likesomething bought secondhand from a community center. No investorswould finance a shopping destination whose biggest restaurant is apie shop and where national franchises are virtuallynonexistent.
Of course, those are the reasons why everyone loves it.
For years when I lived in the neighborhood, I used to take aweekly walk to Third Street and Fairfax Avenue. I went for thepeanut-butter shakes at Kokomo Cafe, the dark chocolate-coveredgraham crackers at Littlejohn’s English Toffee House, and the freshproduce from Charlie Lopez’s stand. The old-timers had facesstraight out of my family album, and the hipsters relaxed theirSaturday-night attitudes over Sunday-morning pancakes. It was thekind of place I hoped would never change.