While Ireland's economy swelled in the early 2000s, its citizens amassed a massive amount of surplus toys and goodies. People had money, so they spent it.
“Good for business, but bad for the soul,” is how Lauren Norton described that period of growth to me this week. The result, of course, was an implosion of the nation's economy.
Norton is from Ireland, but currently lives in Davis and teaches at the university.
In the wake of the collapse, a vibrant second-hand market emerged as people came to grips with the new financial reality. Norton thought it was a beautiful thing, so she became an active participant in the second-hand selling, trading and thrifting culture.
She's now working to bring that spirit to Davis in the form of the Davis Flea Market, which will be held for the first time on Jan. 29 at the , and on the last Sunday of each month. She is currently taking online applications for booths and asking participants to spread the word on Facebook.
Each booth will cost $20, and the seller will keep all profits after that initial fee. You can apply here. Norton says the applications have been flooding in.
She hopes the market will be an opportunity for university students and city folk to cross paths and get creative in a shared space. She feels the downtown art scene can thrive when the line between the university and downtown becomes blurred. She believes the creative energy on campus is an asset to Davis as a whole.
She also believes the students themselves stand to gain from their involvement in things like the flea market.
“It’s a powerful thing running a business,” Norton said. “Even if it’s just for five hours on the last Sunday of every month.”
She hopes the flea market will eventually move to , but she’s keeping the space small and manageable for now. There will also be live music and food vendors. The promotional flyer (pictured in this story) will be designed by a different artist each month and available for purchase.
Everything from clothes and jewelry to handmade arts and crafts will be sold, with priority going to second-hand items and handmade goods. Norton wants to avoid a swap-meet style market filled with cheap items purchased in bulk and brought to the market for resale.
Here’s how market describes iteslf on its Facebook page:
The Davis Flea Market is a once monthly affair that brings together members of the community in the spirit of commerce and camaraderie. It is a non profit driven social enterprise, promoting sustainability and opportunity. Each month, residents of Davis are invited to apply for a stand at the market where they can sell used books, cds, furniture, clothing, knick knacks, toys, arts and crafts and electronics. We want to divert your clutter from the landfill and into the hands of new owners! The Davis Flea will be a place for students, families and professionals, where we can hone our haggling skills, drink hot chocolate, meet friends and listen to live music. It’s like the Farmer’s Market, but for those of us who produce more clutter than cantaloupe.
- Booths cost $20
- Held at the
- Open to the public at 11 a.m. on Jan 29
- Successful applicants will get an email on Jan. 14.
- Vendors will be announced publicly on Jan. 20.