Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Little Flea Turns 1 This Weekend

This Saturday marks the 1-year anniversary of Little Flea. Thanks to the support of Lawrenceville residents and visitors, what began as a happening orchestrated by no more than eight vendors (see image below), has slowly turned into a weekly neighborhood marketplace "featuring a rotating variety of flea, craft, food and cultural entertainment."


The first edition of the Little Flea achieved its main purpose - and then some. This past Saturday, a group of intrepid vendors - the pioneers - set out to spend the day in a sun-drenched parking lot at the corner of 36th and Butler determined to sell their individual collections of stuff (for a lack of a better word) and have a good time while at it. -- From an August 2009 blog post.


Today Little Flea is still a fledgling market, each week trying to become better at we do and better known to our community. What do we do exactly? Well, the market is known for its quality goods and quality people, a space made to fit and reflect our eclectic, diverse neighborhood.

Little Flea hopes to contribute to the sustainability of our community by providing a space for local vendors, artists, and neighbors to gather and share, as well as to serve as a modest economic catalyst for entrepreneurs and our growing business district at large. Environmental sustainability is also at the core of the flea market, as it actively engages in the recycling of goods and attracts vendors who, in one way or another, trade environmentally-friendly goods or use repurposed materials for their products. In fact, the 2010 season is dedicated to "the story of stuff", a call to reflect on the deeply impacting relationship we all share with the things we consume.

Istvan Medgyesi plays the Little Flea Cultural Corner

This year also saw the introduction of the Cultural Corner and Community Table, two great additions that have significantly transformed the flea market into what some have described as a kind of neighborhood square.

Here's a quick look back at the first Little Flea through the eyes of Pittsburgh filmmaker and Little Flea vendor, Carl Cimini. The video features happy shoppers, some kickass flea finds, and a few of the first crop of pioneer vendors who have now become familiar faces. Soundtrack "provided" by the inimitable Miriam Makeba, singing our adopted anthem - "The Naughty Little Flea". Carl captured what we all know the Little Flea to be: a little place to experience community - where you can chat at length, make new friends or meet old ones, trade or buy (un)wanted treasures - and it is also an invitation to (re)discover what the rest of our dear neighborhood has to offer - not only the shops but the residents who make Lawrenceville a great place to visit and live. -- From an August 2009 blog post.
Thank you all for making Little Flea a better market. The 2010 season ain't over yet, so come on out and share with us. We hope to see you this Saturday!

P.S. Carl Cimini is regular vendor at the market, where he sells Pasta Domenica, his own artisanal brand of authentic Italian pasta.

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