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 November 2012

November 2012

 

Goods for Less

Bargain Hunting at the West End Flea Market

Chris Duffey

     The newest flea market in Alameda — the West End Flea Market at the College of Alameda — emphasizes the fun-loving spirit of traditional flea-market shopping. Opened in March, this free flea market is akin to an older market of the 1960s, loosely credited with bringing Island flea-marketing to the forefront.
     “My mother went to the flea market at the Alameda Drive-In,” says West End Flea Market operations manager Carol Hum. “People always tell us that this market is reminiscent of it.”
     The market’s manageable size has a lot to do with it. For now, it is sparsely populated, though has room for 230 spaces (at affordable rent). Small is a good thing here, allowing treasure hunters to circle the market multiple times for satisfying comparison shopping on household knickknacks and vintage finds, from $1 books
to collectible toys and bargain-priced jewelry.
     The West End Flea Market favors a generalist approach with variety the goal, so there’s no emphasis on antiques or arts and crafts. With experienced local sellers and newer vendors
de-cluttering their closets and garages regularly, every Saturday at West End Flea Market tells a different story every time.
Hours are 9 a.m.–4 p.m.
     “In addition to providing a wonderful setting for experienced vendors, the flea market offers an important option for individuals and households in the Bay Area who want to downsize belongings or to earn extra income,” Hum says. “It’s a great time for people to buy goods for less.”


West End Flea Market, College of Alameda, 555 Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway, 510-999-1431, www.westendfleamarket.com.

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