Former Village Flea Market general manager Jael Van Boening is preparing to open a new flea market, and it’s going to be about three times the size she originally intended.
That’s because the Village Flea Market is closing early next month after 42 years in business, and a number of vendors who are there are going to be at Van Boening’s new business.
“I know these folks (and) have worked with them – have helped them build their businesses,” Van Boening says. “The whole point of doing this is they still need a home.”
Wichita Community Market is going to open next month in the Westway Shopping Center at 2465 S. Seneca at the southwest corner of Pawnee and Seneca.
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Van Boening was general manager of the Village Flea Market until February, which is when she began planning what she thought would be a 10,000-square-foot new market.
“And then the news came that the Village Flea Market was closing,” she says. “Now there’s a lot of vendors that need somewhere to go.”
The Westway space, which is next to Harbor Freight Tools, is 32,000 square feet. Van Boening says most of the 92 booths she has are reserved.
“I’ve lost count.”
There will be some restrictions on what Wichita Community Market can sell because Harbor Freight and Westlake Ace Hardware are in the same center.
However, Van Boening says she thinks Westway will be a better space than the Village Flea Market had at 2301 S. Meridian.
“It’s easier to get to,” she says.
The former postal call center is undergoing remodeling now.
“All your favorite Village Flea Market vendors will be there,” Van Boening says. “And there will be some new vendors.”
Initially, the market will be open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. By the second month, days of operation will expand.
The Village Flea Market’s last day in business is July 2. Van Boening says her market will open no later than July 1.
“We’ll open earlier if we can.”