Sharing Quality Since 1908Sickles Market started over 100 years ago as a farm, selling its own fruits and vegetables to local stores. Harold Sickles and his wife, Elsie, ran it on farmland acquired from his mother’s family, the Parkers. The property the Sickles farmed was located on Harrison Avenue, off Rumson Road, in Little Silver, where Sickles Market is today. The Parker family first acquired the land in 1663 in a land grant from the king of England to Peter Parker of Rhode Island. Parker later moved to this area. Eventually a daughter married a Sickles (Harold’s father) and the rest became history. In 1945 Bob Sickles Sr. joined his parents and in 1978 Bob (the third generation of Sickles) joined in.
Bob Sr. and Adelaide started selling their produce to the public from a seasonal farm stand built on the main farm property. In addition to the Harrison Avenue land, Bob Sr. also farmed over 125 acres spread all over Monmouth County while Adelaide ran the market. The Sickles children helped at the farm stand. By the time Bob Jr. was 14, he was buying produce from other local farms to supplement what they grew themselves.
Along the way the farm market expanded to include the sale of annual bedding plants and flowers, as well as vegetable plants. Customers wanted to be able to grow the same quality vegetables in their own gardens that they were purchasing from the farm stand, so Bob Sr. started growing extra vegetable plants to sell to his customers. Soon an entire garden center became a part of the market. It included perennials and nursery stock. About the same time, grocery staples, such as dairy products, bread, and high quality jams, were added for the convenience of the customers. Fresh cut flowers and unusual gift items also found their way into the simple garage-like space.
Some things don’t change. Bob Sr. is still farming some of the land on Harrison Avenue, but now concentrates on growing just a few specialty crops like raspberries and blackberries. He continues to grow Jersey Fresh corn on some land in Middletown.
Bob Jr. now runs the business while still emphasizing quality and customer service. In 1999, the Sickles family decided the Market would stay open 12 months each year. This led to building a new, state of the art greenhouse, and winterizing the market. The size of the market was also increased to allow for expansion of the existing departments and the creation of several new departments.
Today, Sickles Market is known not only for having the highest quality, freshest produce and plants, as always, but also for its wide selection of gourmet grocery items, international cheeses, baked goods, butcher shop, deli, and a kitchen presenting fresh, chef-prepared foods to satisfy every taste and occasion. Sickles also offers fresh cut flowers and custom floral services, a charming gift boutique featuring eclectic items from home décor and tableware, to personal care, fashion jewelry and accessories, and an extensive garden center with high quality garden accessories, furniture, tools and supplies to go along with Sickles’ selection of plants, flowers, seeds, trees and shrubs.
One important thing that has not changed since the farm market began is the essence of what makes this market so special: the old-fashioned values of service, quality, and genuinely caring about you, our customers. Please stop in and experience the Sickles version of customer service. We look forward to sharing quality with you.