(Crystal A. Proxmire, March 19, 2013)
Chris and Tiffany Best of The Rust Belt Market have reached their $20,000 Kickstarter goal to help them remodel their large artists’ market. Now the real work begins, as they prepare to create an event space that will allow them to host events during the week without worrying about the security of the artists who have booth areas at the market.
Chris explained that remodeling will begin after close of business this Sunday. “This weekend will be the last weekend the market will look the way it has for the last two years! After this Sunday it will look different forever. Tell your readers to visit us and bring their cameras,” he teased. While said in jest, he has a point. The facility is not just your typical flea-market. Each vendor is required to have their space designed and approved to meet their tough standards of creativity. Currently there is a small stage is in the center of the relatively open floor plan, with giant hand-made light fixtures adorning the ceiling overhead. The walls themselves could be considered works of art.
The theme will remain, but the layout will change. Best explained that the Rust Belt will remain open during the construction, in the front 1/3 of the building. The Woodward Avenue entrance will be the only one open to the public. Hours will remain the same, Sat 11-7, Sunday 11-6.
The target date for completion is May 2. “Metrotimes Blowout starts that night and we are a venue so we better be ready,” Best said.
Reservations are being accepted for the “event/meeting/flex space” that is being created. Floor plans only hint at the awesomeness that is planned. “They just have to trust us that it will be really cool,” he said. The space will be separate from the vendor area for security purposes, but can be accessed for weekend events that tie the two attractions together. The remodeling will help them to diversify the income from the space, which currently goes unused five days out of the week.
The Bests chose to do a Kickstarter rather than take out loans or find investors, and the community responded with generosity. “The folks that supported us are the coolest people on Earth! They get what we are all about and understand how important this transition is and what it means for our continued success. We will not let them down. We know they will be impressed,” Best said. “We love our community of supporters so much. We have been embraced by Ferndale and the surrounding area and that does not go unnoticed. It fuels us to keep going and not to get complacent. We always aim to impress while meeting the demands of what our supporters are looking for.”
To learn more about the Rust Belt, visit their website at http://www.rustbeltmarket.com.
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