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Monday, May 20, 2024

New Carolina Beach craft market gives outlet for vendors affected by Covid-19

The inaugural Mid-Week Market at Good Hops Brewing on the first Wednesday of June. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Terri Leeman)

CAROLINA BEACH — Terri Leeman had been an accountant for 30 years when the Covid-19 economic shutdown forced her out of work in mid-March.

Unlikely to return to the small Wilmington business that employed her at the time, she decided to make a go at a craft business she’d been dabbling in for several years, selling seashell art at local seasonal markets.

RELATED: Carolina Beach will allow restaurants to use parking lot space for outdoor seating

Most well established weekend markets were already full, but seeing that the Kure Beach Market was held every Tuesday, she wondered why a similar mid-week market couldn’t work in Carolina Beach.

“I put up an ad on a Facebook page and was overwhelmed by responses,” Leeman said. “That’s when I thought, ‘Okay then, let’s try it.'”

On Wednesday, June 3, she hosted the inaugural Mid-Week Market at Good Hops Brewing with six other craft and food vendors, alongside Poor Piggy’s BBQ. The rules: each vendor sells locally produced or crafted products, and no two vendors can compete with each other selling similar items.

“We don’t have any vendors selling stuff out of the trunk of their cars,” Leeman said. “They all sell quality products.”

Leeman’s Speshell Creations sells pieces of art created with shells, pebbles, and sea glass that Leeman collects along the beach; Glynne’s Soaps makes all-natural soaps, balms, and lotions for people and their dogs; Elderberry Tribe sells a variety of elderberry products to combat the flu and prevent allergies.

One product, she said, was particularly popular.

“Sea Monster Sauces have just gone kind of blockbuster with their Surfer Slappin Sauce,” she said. “It’s kind of sweet with a bite on the end of it.”

She also made sure to limit the number of vendors to prevent overcrowding in the brewery’s parking lot, and took other precautions against spreading the coronavirus, like placing vendors at least six feet apart and wiping tables with sanitizer.

She said the next goal is to advertise the new craft market to tourists visiting the popular island town.

“We’re all struggling right now, trying to figure out this new way of life,” she said.

Barbie dolls, appropriately clad in face masks, show off Sea Monster Sauces’ Surf Slappin! Sauce. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Sea Monster Sauces)

Details

  • When: Every Wednesday from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. (scheduled until Aug. 26)
  • Where: Good Hops Brewing parking lot (811 Harper Ave., Carolina Beach)

Rotating list of vendors

  • Cut With Love by Lexi: home decoration, t-shirts
  • Elderberry Tribe: elderberry syrup, tea, jams, jellies, lollipops, coffee, gummies, etc.
  • Face Masks by Susan: Covid-19 face masks
  • Glynne’s Soaps: all-natural soaps, balms, lotions, etc. for people and their dogs
  • Kate’s Creations: handmade fabric products
  • Moonlit Metals: handmade jewelry
  • Salt and Light Designs: home decor with shell accents
  • Sea Monster Sauces: BBQ sauce (Surfer Slappin! Sauce)
  • Soul Anchor: photo images made into wall hangings, fabric designs, jewelry, note cards, etc.
  • Speshell Creations: pieces of art made with shells, pebbles, and sea glass found along the N.C. coast

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