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"Does Your Regional Convention Have A Flea Market?" Topic

26 Posts

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1,130 hits since 23 Mar 2018
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47Ronin24 Mar 2018 12:34 p.m. PST

With all the talk about the flea market at Cold Wars 2018, I got to thinking about whether smaller, more regional conventions should offer this event as part of their convention lineup.

For example, in the past NJCON has had a "Bring and Buy" room that has worked well. Flea markets at smaller conventions might help to cover convention expenses. Plus, most smaller conventions have fewer dealers.

If HMGS flea markets are going to be held in the Host's Showroom from now on, smaller conventions might have an opportunity here to pick up some new gamers who just want to sell stuff.


Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 1:51 p.m. PST

Little Wars has a very big one

Double G Sponsoring Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 3:04 p.m. PST

HAVOC has one, they run it on the last day of the convention after most of the dealers have packed and left on Sunday.

What a concept.

Hlaven Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 3:23 p.m. PST

I don't know if Denver's has one but that sounds great.

SgtGuinness24 Mar 2018 4:02 p.m. PST

Florida's HMGS-South has a flea market for both of our Orlando conventions. It's a big hit each Friday night of our cons and lots of fun stuff changes hands each con. Recon is this April starting on the 26th and Hurricon is 27 September, 2018. See you there!!!

14th NJ Vol Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 4:33 p.m. PST

Both MilleniumCon & Twistercon in my area have flea markets. I seem to drop a lot more money at MilleniumCon in Round Rock Texas.

Tom Reed Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 4:46 p.m. PST

Yeah, we went to Little Wars a couple years ago. We got there at 10:30 am and the Flea Market was closed and IIRC didn't open again until after we left that afternoon.

Our local con does not have a flea market. I think they don't want it to compete with the dealers or the auction.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 5:11 p.m. PST

I was about to reply that I didn't even have a regional con, but that's unfair to HMGS Great Lakes. The problem is that they prefer smaller, intimate cons, which means you don't get the mass of flea marketeers or customers you need for a really good flea market. And they want to hold the flea market evenings--as in the recent unfortunate Cold Wars experiment--which is annoying to the whole weekender and just flat fatal to the day-tripper. I'd have to drive to a small town with a limited choice of games, then stay overnight to see whether there was anything in the flea market.

So Cold Wars, SYWA Con, Historicon and Fall In, despite the driving distances.

Personal logo ColCampbell Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2018 6:17 p.m. PST

Our local con, Bayou Wars, does have a small flea market. I've both sold a few items and bought a few items over the years.


P.S. We'll be in a new location this June, on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. See details in the link, above.

goragrad24 Mar 2018 6:41 p.m. PST

Westwars held in May by CMH in Denver has a swap meet/flea market on the Sunday morning prior to the annual meeting and start of gaming. Things don't get picked up until closing at the end of the day so can be purchased or swapped for until then.

I believe the same occurs in the fall at Veteran's Wars (missed it due to work).

P.S. Nothing along those lines at Genghiscon or Tacticon though.

cturnitsa Supporting Member of TMP25 Mar 2018 7:18 a.m. PST

The ODMS shows have had Sunday morning flea markets for a couple of years now, they have been very successful. So far, we do a first come first serve, with free tables. Some great deals have been conducted.

The shows we are talking about are The Williamsburg Muster, and Guns of August. Since the later has moved into a museum, and will probably be replaced by "Call to Arms", in October, we will probably have a flea market at that show.

GamesPoet Supporting Member of TMP25 Mar 2018 10:56 a.m. PST

Yes, Huzzah! in Portland ME has a flea market on Sunday mornings, after the vendors have all day Friday and all day Saturday to show there wares.

Personal logo Kaiju Doug Supporting Member of TMP25 Mar 2018 12:19 p.m. PST

We have a two-day conference here in NW Ohio; Drums at the Rapids and always have room for items for sale. I'm reluctant to call it a flea market, more like a garage sale because attendees grab a table or counterspace for their stuff as they come in. We don't charge for this and because of our small size we only have one or two dealers, who will run a game at their vendor tables (We don't charge them for their tables but we do limit how many they can have.)
Most of the gamers I know can pay for the weekend by selling off some of their stuff at the show. I have come out even most of the time, selling terrain and buying troops.
Promo follows.
This is 19th year for our little show and for the past 10 years we've been at Fort Meigs in Perrysburg Ohio, a reconsturcted fort of the War of 1812 era. A great location for a war gaming event. It's held every year on Armed Forces Day. Check out the fort's website for more information.

jpipes Inactive Member25 Mar 2018 2:26 p.m. PST

The thing about having flea markets after the dealers are done or go home, is that makes it hard for people to spend the money they make selling with the actual dealers!

RudyNelson26 Mar 2018 3:55 a.m. PST

In the South flea markets are common at almost all shows. I attend Bayou Wars, Hubcon, Recon, Hurricon, Siege of Augusta, Reunion and a few others. They may differ in how they are run. Some use periods of set time, some are all day for one day and others run all show long.

One event that varies greatly is auctions. Most do not use them and they have gone to raffles in the east. Western areas do not use raffles. Only occasionally do I see a silent auction though I might run one at Recon.

Personal logo Dervel Supporting Member of TMP Fezian26 Mar 2018 4:47 a.m. PST

All our local one day conventions have free flea market tables. They are typically unmanned and informal, these local cons are only 100-150 people events.

Old Wolfman26 Mar 2018 6:20 a.m. PST

I know CincyCon and Advance The Colors have a small but nice flea market.

Heisler26 Mar 2018 8:52 a.m. PST

We never rain a flea market at either Genghis Con or Tacticon. Space for events was always at a premium and many of the dealers had very specific objections against flea markets. On the other hand Genghis Con has a very large Friday night auction which you could argue acts as a flea market in some ways. Tacticon's auction is smaller but still pretty well attended, at least it was in the past before the new regime took over.

Captain Gideon Inactive Member26 Mar 2018 9:55 a.m. PST

We have 3 local Conventions(San Francisco Bay Area) thoughout the year which are:




Now each convention has Flea Markets and the times are vastly different.

Dundracon has a Flea Market on Friday and Saturday which I can go to.

Kublacon has a late night Flea Market on Friday 11:30pm and one on Monday.

And Pacificon has a few Flea Markets at different times.

Some Flea Markets are decent and others outright suck.

RudyNelson26 Mar 2018 5:29 p.m. PST

I attended Pacificon twice once in 1985 and once in 1986.they held a huge flea market in the courtyard of the Dunfries hotel. Nice shows.

torokchar Supporting Member of TMP28 Mar 2018 4:59 p.m. PST

MillenniumCon Texas – we run our flea market on Sunday – brings out a big crowd that would normally pass on that day. Also at the end of the convention so not interfering with the dealers. This has worked well for Lone Star Historical Miniatures (LSHM) clubs MillenniumCon.

Held every Veterans weekend in Round Rock (N. Austin) Texas

ordinarybass Supporting Member of TMP29 Mar 2018 4:14 p.m. PST

Adepticon has "bits trading" which is their open flea market. Anyone who has purchased a weekend badge (Adepticon is free to walk in and look around.) can sell for free. The Vendor hall closes at 6 each night and bits trading happens after that til midnight.

Their policies generally help keep the draw and merch a bit different than what's in the Vendor hall. PDF link

Personal logo Bowman Supporting Member of TMP29 Mar 2018 4:38 p.m. PST

HotLead has a bring and buy on their main day. The stuff is dropped off by the owners, who can go and play games instead of working a table. The actual selling is done by the hard working HotLead staff, based on prices determined by the owner. The organization keeps a cut of total sales which it then donates to various charities and good causes. I didn't notice any conflict with the vendors either.

shthar31 Mar 2018 1:09 a.m. PST

You gotta schedule the flea market so they after they're done selling, they can go hit the dealers.

MadBob Supporting Member of TMP02 Apr 2018 6:24 a.m. PST

Siege of Augusta and NashCon have them. I normally take and set up stuff. Always end up bringing home more than I left with much to the chagrin of my wife.

47Ronin12 Apr 2018 12:53 p.m. PST

Thanks for all the replies so far.

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