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August 4, 2008 / chrisisgross

Alameda Flea Market

Yesterday was pretty rad. As usual did not bring my camera though in this case I blame it on the fact that I woke up at 7 in the morning on a Sunday; one full hour before I would get up if it was a weekday.

With no coffee or food or common sense in my system Julie and I got in our Zipcar(this one was in someone’s garage which was both a first and really weird) to speed to Alameda. First we had to skirt the marathon which wasn’t as bad as it could have been. I personally can not imagine running a marathon in this city. I run 3+ miles a couple of times a week and just that is lousy. 26.2 miles with all those hills count me disinterested. With little to no problem we arrived at the Alameda Naval Yard the former home of a naval air squadron now the home of tumbleweeds and once a month the flea market.

We have been meaning to get out to this flea market or as they elegantly name it Antiques by the Bay for some time and little did we know how crazy big it was. The market is located on the base’s old runway since it has grown so big. When we pulled up at 8:45 we were already parked at section Q about 1/4 of a mile from the gate. The market opens at 6 a.m. and the sliding scale is in reverse. So instead of an early bird special it is for the late birds. The theory is that all the good stuff is picked over later, but when you have as many vendors as they did there is still way way way too much stuff.

The vendors much like the parking were laid out on the same alphabet grid with their’s ending at W. There was about 40-50 stalls to a row so I am conservatively estimating that there were at least 800 vendors. (Though when I just did the math that seems high so I just looked at the website and that is about right.) There were folks selling all manners of rugs, doodads, recovered things, comics, records and useful miscellanea. Some of the best were the ones who just had one thing like the guy who had only 1950-60’s era science equipment or the women with all 80’s couture clothing who also looked breathtaking in her YSL and furs.

As for us we got a table for our entryway that was formerly a box of some sort from a Masonic Temple in Esparto, CA a town about 25 miles west of Davis. The guy refinished it, put legs on it, sanded and repainted it. Looks really nice and has a bunch of what would be called character. I personally scored some records for a total of $10 one of which so happens to be the original soundtrack to Star Wars(woulda paid more than $10 just for that). My life just got a hell of a lot better or lamer depending on how you want to look at it.

After spending some time and not too much money the sun was out so we motivated to Berkeley to a nice vintage place called Brownie’s who specialize in unworn deadstock stuff. Picked up another awesome Pendleton to add to the collectipn as well as a nice set of Lee stay-press pants. Think I will wear them to work tomorrow(the pants at least).

All in all a day well spent(and not overspent). Starting tomorrow we get our Community Supported Agriculture box from Farm Fresh To You(whom we learned about at the Ferry Building Farmers Market). It is really cheap and it’s gonna be like food Christmas every other Tuesday.

I am gonna do an unboxing of the CSA so get excited!


One Comment

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  1. indrafortney / Jul 14 2010 4:18 pm

    I enjoyed reading your blog, and thanks to you have just signed of for Farm Fresh To You. I saw them at the green festival at Mascone in SF but I never got around to doing it till now.
    You can check out blogs about the Alameda Flea market and other various stuff on my site:

    Keep on blogging! 🙂

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