Plant City Farm & Flea Market adds weekend hours to accommodate displaced Fun-Lan vendors

The market will offer 'pay what you can' prices to vendors from Fun-Lan after the drive-in and swap shop closed this week.

click to enlarge The Plant City Farm & Flea Market added weekend hours to help displaced vendors from Tampa's Fun-Lan Drive-In and Swap Shop. - PLANT CITY FARM & FLEA MARKET/FACEBOOK
Plant City Farm & Flea Market/Facebook
The Plant City Farm & Flea Market added weekend hours to help displaced vendors from Tampa's Fun-Lan Drive-In and Swap Shop.
Starting Saturday Dec. 11—and for the first time ever—Plant City Farm and Flea Market will open gates on the weekend. Officials at the Plant City Flea told Creative Loafing Tampa Bay that the unprecedented move open on Saturday and Sunday is in response to an overflow of vendors displaced when Tampa's Fun-Lan Drive-In and Swap Shop shut down earlier this week.

Stephanie Allred, whose family runs the flea market—located at 708 W Sam Allen Rd. in Plant City—said that the gates will open at 7 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Vendors can arrive at 6 a.m. if they like, she says. The flea market will close when the last vendors leave, sometime in the afternoon.
There are 600 vendor spaces at the flea market, and no pre-registration will be required as this effort to help Fun-Lan vendors gets underway.

Allred said a pay-what-you-can model for displaced vendors setting up at the Saturday and Sunday market should run for around a month, until they can establish a customer base. "No charge will be required, but people can pay whatever they can afford to help with cleanup and staffing," Allred added.

The Plant City market—founded in 1978—was usually open only on Wednesdays until now, and it'll still charge their normal price for vendors on that day, ranging from $10-$15 for a spot.
Location Details

The Plant City Farm & Flea Market

Corner of Hwy 39 N. & Sam Allen Rd, Plant City Elsewhere in Florida

(813) 752-4670

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Earlier this week, the Plant City market was overrun with Fun-Lan vendors who, on Dec. 2, were given three days notice about Fun-Lan's closure. Displaced vendors just wanted anywhere to go, and that's when Allred's father put out feelers on social media to see if people wanted the market to be open on the weekends. The post got an overwhelmingly positive response from customers and former Fun-Lan vendors alike.

More than anything, the family just wants to help those who need help after having to leave Fun-Lan last minute.

"It was mayhem when the vendors showed up on Wednesday, there were around 100 new vendors and we had to turn some away," Allred said. "But now, we're extending hours because we want to give these people a place to go."

Allred said that the flea market is also interested in hiring former employees from Fun-Lan.

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About The Author

Justin Garcia

Justin Garcia previously wrote for the USA Today Network, The Economic Hardship Reporting Project, Scalawag Magazine, and various other news outlets. When he's not writing, Justin likes to make music, read, play basketball and spend time with loved ones. 


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