The Times West Virginian

Business

June 1, 2014

East Side Indoor Flea Market gets busier

FAIRMONT — The new East Side Indoor Flea Market is seeing more and more customers every week.

“Each weekend, it’s gotten better,” said Tara Tipton, who owns the business with her husband Kevin.

At the beginning of May, the couple opened their new family business in Fairmont at 316 Merchant St., which is at the bottom of the Gateway Connector by the High Level Bridge.

Stationed next door in the same building is Kevin’s law firm, Tipton Law Offices, which he started in 2006 and has been in its current location for three years now.

Tara explained that she and her husband bought the building about a year ago and had some empty space available inside. They thought about enterprises that might do well in Fairmont and decided to establish an indoor flea market.

The Tiptons felt that the Friendly City needed this type of business, and it made sense to establish the store in this high-traffic, busy location.

“We’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback from the community,” Tara said. “Everybody that comes in is really excited.”

East Side Indoor Flea Market is open every Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The business has room for 22 vendors, with each space measuring 70 square feet, or 7 feet by 10 feet. The individual vendors are in charge of selecting the merchandise to set up in their particular area.

Customers can find a variety of items available for sale, including antique and vintage furniture, home decor, collectibles, art, jewelry, books, toys and something for everyone.

The store keeps adding more vendors, who are all from Fairmont right now, and spaces are still available. It also takes consignments.

Tara and Kevin stay busy running the flea market by themselves on the weekends, although some of the vendors choose to stay during the hours of operation. In addition, the business features a snack bar that sells prepackaged food items.

The couple did some major renovations to the building at 316 Merchant St. The structure has two nice apartments upstairs, but the main floor was pretty much a shell when they purchased it. They spent time remodeling the entire streetfront portion of the building, including about a month on the space for the flea market.

“It’s been a lot of work, but it’s also been a lot of fun,” Tara said.

The Tiptons’ children, 9-year-old Karleigh and 5-year-old Jackson, often accompany their parents to East Side Indoor Flea Market and help out. They also visit other flea markets and yard sales together.

Tara and Kevin are both West Virginia natives. Tara grew up in Morgantown, and Kevin is originally from just outside of Bluefield. They currently live in Morgantown with their family.

For more information, call 304-502-2550 or email shopeastsideflea@gmail.com. People can also go online to shopeastsideflea.wix.com/eastsideindoorflea or find East Side Indoor Flea Market on Facebook.

Email Jessica Borders at jborders@timeswv.com or follow her on Twitter @JBordersTWV.     

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