Saturday, November 22, 2014

East Texas flea market reopens after two-year gap

A flea market in Whitehouse, Texas, has reopened after being shuttered for two years. “I own that place and ran it as an antique place and then as a flea market up until about two years ago, but I had to close it down,” says Nancy Parker, owner of the Whitehouse Indoor Flea Market and its property. She had to close her doors when her father became ill and needed around-the-clock care. “I’m taking care of him 24/7, which keeps my hands full. But now my son is available to come down here and run it for us.”

With help from son and market manager Jonathan Parker, the market is open again, after a brief stint as a restaurant. It opened its doors in a soft launch Dec. 1, 2010, and so far has six vendors — seven including the Parkers, who sell there too. At the swap meet’s peak, before it closed two years ago, the site could accommodate 14 vendors. The current mix is eclectic, including a florist and an artist, as well as vendors selling shabby chic decor, dishes, vintage glassware and jewelry, and linens. Most of the merchandise is second-hand or antique.

Nancy Parker says the location, on 300 State Highway 110 S, in Whitehouse, about halfway between Dallas and Shreveport, La., generates a lot of traffic and interest. The market has also been advertising on CraigsList. It is open Tuesday through Saturday.

Spaces run from $35 to $135 per month, depending on size. Parker expects the flea market to keep growing. “We want as many dealers as we can get,” she says. “The more you have in there, the more they get the word out, the more variety they have, and the more the market is a real asset to the community.” She is planning a special Monday sale for flea market and antique dealers looking to source product in January, as well as a grand opening event in February. For more information, call (903) 894-7221.

The Whitehouse Indoor Flea Market has reopened two years after owner Nancy Parker was forced to close.

Photo credit, with thanks, Jonathan Parker.

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