FIU hospitality grad Carley Sumner was living in Miami when she founded the wildly popular Miami Flea with Prism Creative Group. The modern flea market, hosted monthly in the city's arts and entertainment district, featured dozens of vendors and artisans selling homemade crafts, vintage clothing, health-conscious food and beverages, and more. Sumner managed the recurring event for two years before moving back to Fort Lauderdale, and now, she's founded a similar event in Fort Lauderdale.
The Flamingo Flea, hosted bi-monthly at Tarpon River Brewing, made its debut back in March and made an immediate splash — the first event attracted almost 1,000 guests and 45 vendors. The Flea returns to Tarpon this Sunday, and Sumner says she's aiming to host more than 1,200 people at this weekend's installment.
Why has the event resonated with the community so quickly?
“I think it’s an authentic event and there’s nothing being forced here,” says Sumner. “All of the vendors make it work and help get the word out as well. It truly is a collective effort.”
But the event's success can also be chalked up to Sumner's experience and marketing prowess. While living in Miami, she worked with the likes of the South Beach Wine and Food Festival and the Fillmore Miami Beach in various capacities.
Sumner's got an impressive list of vendors lined up for this month's flea, spanning vintage clothing, jewelry, crafts, food, and accessories. Participants include Lemon Honey Salon, Daddy Daughter Jewelry, Brody’s Bandana, Bake My Day Baked Goods and Gifts, Andreu’s Luxury Closet, and more.
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New for this flea, there will be a Wander Shop brunch mixer onsite from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. with a special “make and take” ring workshop and beverages. Good Karma Pet Rescue of South Florida is also returning with dog adoptions from noon to 3 p.m.
And, as for how Flamingo Flea may be growing in the future?
“For now, I don’t want to oversaturate myself, and we’ll be sticking to one Flamingo Flea every other month,” says Sumner. “But I do have other events in store.”
Flamingo Flea. Noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 19, at Tarpon River Brewing, 280 SW Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale; facebook.com. Admission is free.