Thanksgiving Day was almost here, and the last-minute scramble for fresh turkeys, pumpkin pies, and other holiday fixings was in full swing.
At Boston Public Market around noon Wednesday, vendors bustled about as the crowds grew by the minute. Chelsey Erickson, the owner of Finesse Pastries, said she and her team started baking at their Quincy kitchen at 2 a.m. to fill more than 100 orders, and they made sure to have plenty of extras on hand.
“It took us two separate deliveries to get everything here,” Erickson said. “[We made] a ton of pies, we did macaroons . . . some mini-cakes, just assorted little pastries. But mainly the pies.”
Next to Erickson’s stand, the line at Stillman Quality Meats was getting longer. As new customers approached the counter, Mark Jaquith asked whether they were “picking up a bird.” He had some bad news — their preordered turkeys had not yet arrived. The delivery truck, faced with a daunting holiday schedule, was running behind.
“For the season, we’re at about 800 [turkeys] or so,” he said. “I had about 100 go through yesterday. I’m expecting close to the same today, along with your sides and your bacon and your sausage and everything else.”
Erin Grannemann, who lives in Cambridge, had just finished a trip to the motor vehicle registry when she decided to pick up a bouquet of flowers for her new in-laws. Couldn’t hurt, she figured.
“I just got married last month so you know, high stakes,” she quipped. “We’re taking off in a couple hours . . . and decided to grab some flowers for the family.”
Florist Barbara Rietscha said the day before Thanksgiving is reliably hectic.
“It’s a lot of centerpieces, a lot of bouquets for hostess gifts, and people looking to decorate their own table,” she said. “We took preorders through last Friday, but there’s a lot of people that don’t, for whatever reason, preorder. They just come in and rush off.”
Susan Penny traveled from Exeter, N.H., to pick up wine for her Thanksgiving celebration. After buying three bottles from the Massachusetts Wine Shop, she planned to hurry back home, where she will be hosting Thanksgiving dinner for 10 of her family and friends.
“I just like the idea that everything is local and I wanted to have some organic products on my dinner table,” she said.
Randy Feldman, who lives in Worcester, knew all too well he was fulfilling the stereotype of “the last-minute guy” by buying two pies the day before Thanksgiving. But there was a good reason to buy two — he and his girlfriend are celebrating the holiday separately this year. She is staying in town while he visits family in Connecticut. The pie, maybe, would bridge the divide.
“I’m just sending this as a peace offering,” Feldman joked. “Not that we have conflict, but just to keep good relations.”Sophia Eppolito can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @SophiaEppolito.