Wednesdays are usually a drag, which is why I looked forward to visiting the Dallas Eco Co-Op’s second Pop-Up Market from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. yesterday. 14 vendors gathered inside the Eco-Op’s building inside 10137A Shoreview, bumping elbows with each other as the community bought cucumbers from Paul Quinn Farm, the best pimiento cheese from We Me Dallas, and tasted cherry lemonade cookies by Paul Wackym. Recycle Revolution even had a booth outside in case you wanted to get rid of your old computer parts.
The market is tiny and you can cover the entire ground in five minutes if you’re rushed, but market organizers Chad Julka, Trish Percy, and Susie Marshall of the Dallas Eco-Op hope that the market will expand and outgrow the Eco-Op building one day.
In case you aren’t familiar with the Dallas Eco-Op (launched in January 2012), it’s a group of sustainably-minded non-profits and businesses that have banded together to share space, promote each other, and help each other grow.
Julka, Percy, and Marshall started the market for people who need to do some midweek shopping. “People have run out what they’ve got on Saturday, and this gives them an opportunity to come out and get some community,” says Percy. This also means that the Eco-Op’s Pop-Up Market doesn’t compete with other Saturday markets.
The Wednesday market’s goal is to have a whole lot of produce, but yesterday’s pop-up only had one table (Paul Quinn Farm’s) of vegetables for purchase because there’s a shortage of growers in our area. “That’s the hardest piece to a market,” says Marshall.
Percy adds: “And whenever you start a new one, the farmers are already committed to other markets.” But the Eco-Op isn’t just looking for farmers, it also welcomes individual community members who are growing produce on their own plots. This market is open to just about anyone, and, hopefully, this business model works so that there’s always somewhere for local junkies to shop on a Wednesday evening.