Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

St. Louis Swap Meet Coming to Lemp Brewery on Sunday

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

St. Louis Swap Meet Coming to Lemp Brewery on Sunday

Article excerpt

ST. LOUIS * Judging by the response, many people think a swap meet in the city is long overdue.

In just a few months, the new St. Louis Swap Meet launching Sunday on the grounds of the Lemp Brewery at 3500 Lemp Avenue attracted more than 11,000 followers on Facebook and applications from a slew of vendors wanting space at the once-a-week market.

At the corner of Lemp and Cherokee Street, the gates will open around 9:30 a.m. every Sunday depending on the weather and close around 3 p.m. with 100 vendors ranging from contemporary art, vintage clothes, '80s toys, furniture, jewelry, food and random oddities.

"We could easily have opened with 400 vendors; we had that much response," said Martin Casas, who developed the concept and will run the swap meet. The businesses selected to participate are curated to maximize variety and quality.

He said that one day it struck him that of 39 outdoor markets in the region, from small bazaars to established flea markets from Wentzville to Ferguson, none is open on Sunday in the city.

Casas says his aim isn't just to attract people to the flea market but to lure them to the Cherokee-Lemp Historic District of shops and restaurants.

He says he's most excited about creating a venue for new business to test the waters with potential customers and develop their product lines. He sees the swap meet as a kind of business incubator for those who have never had a shop before or only operated digitally before.

Booths are only $25 each and vendors can buy up to three booths to sell their merchandise.

Living the Nerd Life is setting up its first physical shop on the opening day of the swap meet, but the owners have been generating content and selling merchandise online since August of last year.

As you might guess, Living the Nerd Life is a shop selling vintage (meaning '80s) toys, comic books, action figures and game systems such as Game Boy and Nintendo units.

"This is just like the perfect opportunity," said co-owner Ryan Dampf, who lives in Tower Grove and has been selling items online through various sites. …

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