When two local shopkeepers set out to increase foot traffic in downtown Morris, IL. they had no idea their French Country Market would triple in size their first year! Traci Tessone and Monica Spence-Vogel, organizers of the 3 French Hens French Country Market, wanted a market that combined a farmer's market with wonderful wares & showcased their charming boutique filled downtown district~ and encouraged folks to spend the rest of the day hiking, biking, boating, and enjoying all that and more in this Illinois River valley. Shoppers will the love grassy knoll, and historic water filled barge canal on which banks this Euro styled market is held! Egrets, blue herons, jumping fish, and turtles lazily sunny are unexpected sights for seasoned market goers, sharing the towpath with 130+ juried vendors selling everything from farmers market fare to antiques, artisans, and one of a kind must haves.
Tauted one of the best in the Midwest, homegrown produce, organics, & herbs fill baskets along side farm fresh meat and artisanal cheeses. Fresh baked pastries, Amish breads & butters, old fashioned kettle corn & candies entice shoppers to grab a bite on site, and shop all day! An abundance of repurposed, and antique wares include shabby, chippy, industrial, steam punk, and a great selection of primitives. Jewelry designers bring their own flair, with lamp work beads, silversmiths, monogrammed goods, and redesigned grandmas vintage into statement pieces. A market favorite is Good Humor Dave, selling this iconic ice cream out of his restored shiny white, Good Humor truck! Kids young, and young at heart love to ring the famed bell.
When visiting the Market, Tessone and Spence-Vogel hope you'll stop by the Hens booth an say hello! Located under the shade trees, the pair sell favorite finds and one of a kinds...market favorites: European enamelware, chippy chandeliers, vintage market carts, anything recovered in burlap or antique grain sacks, worn dressmaker forms! The Hens love hearing where shoppers hail from, where goods are heading home to~from Wisconsin, Michigan, southern Illinois, Iowa, Indiana to Arizona, and California!
Throughout the market season! the Hens coordinate special events to keep the venue fresh and exciting: a Springtime in Paris luncheon, a kid-filled, rollicking fishing derby, make and take workshops, and their annual Farm to Table dinner! Often times local musicians grab their guitars, a harmonica or two and provide some down home tunes, or a little rockabilly along the canal banks!
Held the 2nd Saturday, May through October, it is not uncommon to see shoppers arrive as the Market opens at 8am and still be shopping as it winds down at 2pm! It is wonderful to come out and run into family, neighbors, old friends & new kindred spirits, and spend the day swapping stories and sharing finds! On market days June through October, stick around and plan on strolling the downtown streets for an old fashioned Cruisenight! With an average of 750-1000 antique and classic cars, trucks, and an occasional vintage cycle...there is something for everyone.
MONICA VOGEL- Entrepreneur and owner of Bleu
Since selling her boutique, French hen Monica Vogel is developing a new retail venture, " Bleu", offering vintage wares and wonderful goods. She will be joining co-organizer, Traci Tessone in the Hens booth, where both offer a mix of antiques, one of a kinds, boutique clothing labels, accessories and necessities for you and your home.
TRACI TESSONE- Entrepreneur and Owner of Whimsy