It's that time again. People longing for locally grown produce and other artisanal produced items need wait no longer. The Westport Farmers Market will open for its new season at 10 a.m. Thursday.

The market, open till 2 p.m., will again set up shop at the lot at 50 Imperial Ave.

"We are very excited," said Lori Cochran, the market executive director. She said the opening session will feature a green juice toast to spring at noon.

New this year, she said, is a recipe program where shoppers will be given two different recipes each week along with a list that will feature seasonal ingredients available at the market.

There is also a "Get Growing Program" for children that runs for 12 weeks.

The goal is to provide fresh, local, healthy and seasonal food to the community, she said. The farm market also promotes education about local food, local farms and sustainable, healthy growing practices.

The logo of the market is "real food, real farmers," something Cochran said they strictly adhere to.

"We have strict guidelines," she added. "We are bringing real food -- producer-only products ... And vendors need to include at least one locally farmed product in any prepared food."

There will be 30 vendors on hand Thursday. Offerings will include breads, organic farm products, pizza and flowers. There are also food vendor trucks on site.

Cochran said eight of the market vendors grow products free of GMOs -- organisms whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.

The market began in 2006 in the parking lot at the Westport Country Playhouse. It moved to the current location at 50 Imperial Ave. in 2009.

The Westport Farmers Market will be open each Thursday -- until Nov. 5 -- from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

More information on the market can be found on its website, www.westportfarmersmarket.com.