66th Street Market vendor struggles to make ends meet

By: Sarah Norcini

 

For many vendors at the 66th Street Flea Market, it is not their only job. Angelina Herrington is one of them. For the past four months, she has been a permanent vendor at the market. Her business, Angie’s Place, is located on the north side of the building. She’s had her share of hardships, and dreams of opening her own business.

Angelina Herrington at her store

Angelina Herrington at her store

Four months ago, Herrington discovered this market. She drove by it because she was curious about it and wanted to see what 66th Street was like. And after working there she noted that “it’s not bad, but it could be a bit busier. It’s not bad, not bad.”

Herrington’s other job is being a cashier-stocker, and views becoming a vendor full time as a “maybe”. It’s all down to the economy, and how well she does at the market. But as she has been finding out, is a lot more difficult than she expected.

Although she’s not new to this business, she says that she wasn’t prepared for the responsibility. Herrington thought that she would just open the store, and everything would essentially run itself. She just hopes that in the end, it’ll pay off.

Herrington’s husband and daughter occasionally help her out. They come in a few days a week to help her with inventory. The products she gets are from yard sales and from people bringing in what they have. She doesn’t travel more than an hour away to get any of her merchandise.

The money she makes goes entirely to the rent of her space at the market. Rent is $400 a month, and she says she is just trying to get by.

The 66th Street Market sign on the side of the building

The 66th Street Market sign on the side of the building

She’s also found it difficult to get the word out about her business. She has a Facebook page, but she doesn’t do much else online. The customers she does have are there mostly through word of mouth. Herrington always gives them her card and encourages them to spread the word.

Herrington has reasons for why business isn’t great at that market. She says that other flea markets in the area get a lot of foot traffic. But this market does not, she goes on to say.

Another reason she gives is that the market is just difficult to find. “I’ve been here for six years, and I just never noticed it. The sign for the market is too high for drivers to notice and the building kind of blends in.” She also pointed out that her son’s girlfriend, who had lived there all her life, passed the building twice before finding it.

Herrington’s experience at the market hasn’t always been the easiest. Despite not being new to this business, she’s come across difficulties. The lack of advertising and location has been her biggest problems.  All Herrington wants to do is to open her own business, hopefully sooner rather than later.

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