We successfully kept the LACC Swap Meet open when everyone thought we couldn’t do it. For the most part everyone who had booths this weekend were respectful and grateful. Thank you to everyone who helped make this possible.
We understand that it is going to take some time to implement the new changes, and we appreciate those who are working with us as we transition. Some of these changes are exciting – the Swap Meet is now open to the public for free, the rent has been reduced, and there is no more bidding for spaces. However, with these changes also come some others that we understand some may not be as excited for. Primarily, vendors demanding their old spots. We understand that these spots have been yours for many years, but for now, it is important that we all be happy that the swap meet has been able to remain open, and we ask for your patience and cooperation while we transition and everyone learns to use the new online booking system.
Moving forward, here are a few things we will have zero tolerance for. Please read everything carefully.
I understand many of you have been in the same booth for years. As you know, we have tried to honor those spaces and trusted every one there would do the same and not try to steal someone else’s booth but this happened on both Saturday and Sunday. It sounds like many of you have agreements with each other about which space is whose – if you want us to be able to respect everyone’s spaces, we need you to respect the spaces of the long-term vendors as well by not booking those spots.
I had to pull a lot of string and put a lot of work into making sure this market could continue without having to shut down, and I had less than one week to make this happen. Otherwise, there would have been no booths at all. I was shocked to hear of the treatment my manager and other staff received while trying to accommodate everyone as best as possible. Again, our goal is to keep things close to the way they were and keep the market running. We have over 3000 vendors registered with us that would love to move in but I have not even invited them because I wanted to protect your businesses. But after this weekend, there will be strict rules in place.
Moving forward, if we have an issue with booth assignments, we will do our best to accommodate everyone’s preferences, but we have the right to relocate you until we can get things worked out. When 2 or more vendors tell us that the space is theirs, we have no idea who is telling the truth. All we can do is consult our list, and whoever has their name assigned to a space is the person who has the space for the day. If anyone raises their voice at my staff, threatens my staff, is disrespectful to my staff, you will be banned from coming back.
There are TWO entrances in the morning. If you enter on Marathon side, you must line up through the alley. Cars that come in directly from Marathon will be redirected to the end of the line in the alley. Our staff will be in green vests to help get you in line. If you enter on the Monroe side, line up along Vermont as you have done in the past. We will have staff checking you in throughout the line and are discussing options to bring back the old card system with your name and space number. If you do not listen to our staff, or cut in line, we will have to ask you to not come back.
We are not your clean-up crew. Your space must be cleaned when you leave – this includes boxes, plastic, food, and small pieces of garbage. If your space is not clean, you will be charged a $100 fee which must be paid before you can return. If we must talk to you more than once about this, you will be banned from coming back. There will be dumpsters available in the coming weeks for you to bring your trash to at the end of the night.
OUTSIDE STREET VENDORS
We are very close to a solution that will not allow for street vending within 500 feet of the swap meet. It’s going to happen. Those street vendors are already banned from ever coming in once they are no longer there. Our goal is to make this as fair as possible for everyone who pays.
I sincerely thank all that came to sell that helped make things smooth, that were kind and welcoming to our staff. Our goal is not to ban vendors. Our goal is to bring in more customers, increase our marketing and to make positive changes so you make more money and enjoy selling at our swap meet.
We are very excited to be involved and get to know you all better. For the most part, we felt welcomed and respected – thank you! We respect what you do and how hard you work and that is why I worked so hard with my staff to make sure you had a place to sell this weekend. However, with new ownership does come new changes and we reserve the right to make them as we see necessary. It will take some time, but it will get easier and better, and we ask for your patience and cooperation while we all learn together.
We are committed to making the LACC Swap the best in town, and we want to work with you. If you do not like these changes, or do not want to participate, we wish you the best elsewhere.
The rules are simple: Be Kind. Be Respectful. Understand that sometimes in the beginning assigned spaces may not be exactly as planned until we learn more about who has seniority. Clean up when you leave.
I hope everyone has a nice week and when we open on Saturday let’s make it a good experience.