This story was corrected on June 30. An explanation follows the story.
Almost 80 years ago, during the Great Depression, a group of women teamed up to form the Montgomery Farm Women's Cooperative Market as a place to sell their wares and make a living for themselves.
It is with a similar spirit that newlyweds Christina and John Howard Payne Jr. decided to open Shells Yes! Crab Cake Company, joining the smorgasbord of faces and flavors inside Bethesda’s bustling three-day-a-week market.
Located in a corner lot of the market building, the Paynes opened their company on Saturday with the hope of building the business and gaining a footing in Bethesda.
“I just try to offer traditional Maryland fare and straightforward cuisine,” John Payne says. “There is nothing fine-dining about it. There is a big Maryland flag in the front and there is beach board everywhere. It’s a crab shack.”
Payne is no stranger to crabs. Before opening Shells Yes! he was a chef at the Wardman Park Marriott in Washington, D.C., and also at a Baltimore restaurant that served thousands of pounds of crab cakes every week.
‘I’ve been around seafood my whole life,” he says.
Payne hopes their fresh seafood will become a hit with the Bethesda lunch crowds who are aching for local crab cakes. He has been handing out flyers, and hopes to offer area delivery soon, as well as expand to other farmers markets.
Just like a farmer could talk to his customer about how his peaches are growing, Payne hopes get feedback from his customers.
“As a chef I would love that,” he said. “It’s a cool connection from farm to table that we need.”
On the menu at Shells Yes! Crab Cake Company this week:
Steamed Shrimp with Old Bay - ½ pound, $8.99
Chesapeake Crab Cake Sandwich - $9.99
Chicken Salad Wrap - $6.99
Maryland Crab Soup - $5.99
The Montgomery Farm Women's Cooperative Market is open Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., 7155 Wisconsin Ave., Bethesda. For more information, visit www.farmwomensmarket.com, call 301-652-2291 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
No matter what you have a taste for there is sure to be a farmers market with something to strike your fancy.
Bethesda Central Farm Market
Elm Street between Wisconsin and Woodmont Avenues in Bethesda
Sundays, April 10 to Nov. 20, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Bethesda Fresh Farm Market
Norfolk Avenue at Veterans Park in Bethesda
Saturdays, May 7 to Oct. 29, 9 am to 1 pm
Briggs Chaney-Greencastle Farmers' Market
3300 Briggs Chaney Road, Silver Spring
Saturdays, May 14 to Nov. 19, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Clarksburg Town Center Farmers' Market
Intersection of Clarksburg Road and Public House Drive
Sundays , June to October, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Crossroads (Takoma Park)
7676 New Hampshire Ave.
Wednesdays , June to October, 3 to 7 p.m.
Damascus High School Farmers' Market
Damascus High School parking lot, 25921 Ridge Road
Thursdays, May 19-October, 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Gaithersburg Farmers Market
Fulks Corner Avenue and Maryland Route 355
Thursdays, June 2 to October, 2 to 6 p.m.
Gaithersburg Main Street Farmers Market
301 Main St.
Saturdays, May to November, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Kensington Farmers Market
Kensington Train Station lot on Howard Avenue
Saturdays, Year Round, 8 a.m. to noon
King Farm Farmers' Market-Rockville
Saturdays, May 28-Oct. 29, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Mattie J.T. Stepanek Park, Pleasant Drive
King Farm Farmers' Market-Rockville
4 rvington Centre, 805 King Farm Blvd.
Wednesdays, May 25 to Oct. 26, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Montgomery Village Farmers' Market
9801 Centerway Road, Montgomery Village
Saturdays, June 4 to Oct. 29, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Olney Farmers and Artists Market
Montgomery General Hospital Corner of Route 108 and Prince Phillip Drive
Sundays, May 8 to Nov. 6, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Potomac Village Farmers Market
Potomac United Methodist Church parking lot, 9908 South Glen Road
Thursdays, May to October, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Rockville Farmers Market
Wednesdays, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m at East Montgomery Avenue at Rockville Town Center
Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Corner of Route 28 and Monroe Street
Shady Grove Farmers' & Artisans' Market
Wednesdays to Nov. 16., 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
Johns Hopkins University in Rockville, 9601 Medical Center Drive. Due to construction, enter campus from Broschart Road. The market will be in the back of the Broschart Road lot.
Silver Spring Fresh Farm Market
Ellsworth Drive between Fenton Street and Georgia Avenue
Saturdays, April to Dec, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Silver Spring - General Getty Park
10000 Woodland Drive
Saturdays, mid-May to Nov. 19, 9 a.m. to noon
Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard Farmers Market
18125 Comus Road Dickerson
Saturdays, April 30 to Oct. 8, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Takoma Park Farmers Market
Laurel Avenue between Eastern and Carroll avenues
Sundays, year round, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Wheaton Farmers Market
Reedie Drive between Veirs Mill Road and Georgia Avenue
Sundays, June 6 to Oct. 30, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Correction: The Maryland Crab Soup was incorrectly spelled.