This story was updated May 20 and 21, see below.
After almost 30 years as a landmark in Beaumont, Calif., the Beaumont Swap Meet will become the SoCal Fair Marketplace when it moves 22 miles to the site of a longstanding fair in Perris, Calif. According to a news report in the Record Gazette, swap meet owner Wayne Howard was forced to move when his landlord raised his rent by 50 percent, on top of a 100 percent increase two years ago.
But the swap meet will benefit in several ways from the move to the Southern California Fairgrounds, also known as the Lake Perris Fairgrounds. The swap meet will cover five acres instead of two, and there is running water with permanent rest rooms, rather than port-a-potties. Still the move was a disappointment to the local community and to Wayne Howard and his family.
“This place was here when I moved here in 1976,” Howard told the Record Gazette. “I’ll miss this location and being able to get up and just head over to work.” But he also emphasized the improvements at the new site.
Hat tip and photo credit: the Record Gazette.
May 20 update: Per the commenter below, it would seem that R.G. Canning Enterprises has in fact set up a new Beaumont Outdoor Market at the site of the old Beaumont Swap Meet. FleaMarketZone continues to try to get comments from Wayne Howard and R.G. Canning, and of course wishes success to both new markets.
May 21 update: Here’s a news article in the Record Gazette on the new Beaumont Outdoor Market. And I got a quote from Wayne Howard on how his new SoCal Fair Marketplace is doing, here.