At the intersection of 14th Street and Broadway, Union Square has a long history—back to at least 1845—as a gathering spot for locals. New York is too large to have one main plaza, but Union Square would make any list of New York's town squares. It's not named after the union of states, or any labor union, but rather the fact that it's where Broadway and the Bowery (though it's called Fourth Avenue at this point) met; in other words, the square marked the "union" of those two thoroughfares. Today it is a popular spot for protests, and where students from NYU and office workers have lunch on sunny days or enjoy warm summer evenings. In December a crafts market sets up here for shoppers looking for presents. Four times a week—on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays—the square's Greenmarket brings in the best of produce from farms near New York City
. It's also a good place to buy food gifts to take home, like regional jams and jellies. Come early and you may spot one of the city's celebrity chefs also checking out the day's bounty.