There may be a recession right now, but the Coastal Carolina Flea Market has already thrived through far bigger issues. The indoor/outdoor market has been destroyed twice, by Hurricane Hugo in September 1989 and by fire in July 1998, and rebuilt with non-combustible construction and a new sprinkler system. This summer, Coastal Carolina, located in Ladson, SC, observed its 30th anniversary, holding a celebration with live music, and the market’s three restaurants rolled back the clock by bringing back 1981 prices for the festivities.
1,000 Spaces of New and Used Merchandise
“The market averages 500 to 600 vendors each Saturday and Sunday, filling about 1,000 spaces,” says Mike Masterson, manager, who has been with the flea market since 1985. “I’ve got 500 indoor spaces, 350 first come, first served outside tables, and about another 100 spots where people can set up in the field, which is the overflow area.” Most vendors who sell inside occupy at least two tables, and there is a waiting list for spots, especially around the holidays. Because the inside is heated, the winter months are usually the most trafficked time of the year.
“The product and the different variety of the merchandise that you can find has always been the draw, and the amount of items that you have to choose from,” Masterson notes. “When I’m filled to capacity and I’ve got a thousand tables selling, there is a hodgepodge of stuff to see. You might find that one piece of Sterling Silver for a dollar that is worth a hundred, but it only occupies an inch of space and it’s covered up in a box. That’s what people know to look for, the ones that are out here looking for those hidden treasures.”
The Coastal Carolina Flea Market features both new and used merchandise, and is open Saturdays and Sundays year-round from 8 to 5, with free parking. Outside tables are $10 each per day, and inside tables are $13 per day and $26 per weekend. For more information, call 843-797-0540.