The Nisqually Moose Lodge has been the site of several pop-up vendor events recently since the small business Pop Up Vendors Galore moved to Yelm.
The business offers space for home-creators and direct sellers to hawk their products at two to three events per month.
Pop Up Vendors Galore began as a small enterprise in Spanaway, in the L.A. Fitness parking lot, but as the weather turned cold and rainy, Jennifer Nordlund and the other coordinators for the business secured a recurring spot at the Nisqually Moose Lodge for indoor events
“It started off as just a few friends, actually,” Nordlund said. “We started by saying, ‘instead of going to an event, let’s start our own.’ We started off doing it to help small businesses go. Because of COVID, people have no sales and (for) entrepreneurs and home crafters, it kind of killed a lot of us.”
They made the move to Yelm in part because they maxed out the Spanaway location’s capacity, Nordlund said, though not all the vendors have elected to stay with the enterprise.
“Some of them stayed, (but) some of them left because we did move to Yelm, and it’s a bit of a commute for them,” she said.
The move to Yelm occurred in September and the first pop-up event took place on Sept. 25.
Nordlund said the folks at the Moose lodge have been wonderful to work with.
“They’re really awesome there (at the lodge),” she said “They work with us. We work with them. It’s kind of our new home.”
People will see all sorts of products for sale at the events. Items include sublimation-design cups and crochet blankets to Color Street Nails and Scentsy.
During the spring and summer, anyone who wants to be a vendor can rent a 10 foot by 10 foot outdoor space for about $45 after bringing their own tent, table and chairs.
In the winter and fall, indoor space is available. There are 6-foot tables available for $45 to $55, 8-foot tables available for $65 to $75, and the lodge’s stage is sometimes available for $100.
Those that want to bring food items need to have them pre-prepared and packaged, and Nordlund said there are often vendors that sell things like chocolate-covered pretzels.
At each of the events, the Nisqually Moose Lodge will also prepare and sell its own food items.
After all the overhead is paid for, the coordinators for Pop Up Vendors Galore make a profit of about 5%, Nordlund said, but the organization is not really about making money.
“We’re really big on charity,” she said. “We try to throw that in as much as we can. With Thanksgiving coming up this month, we are collecting non-perishable Thanksgiving items, and we are going to put together some Thanksgiving baskets, and we are going to do free raffles to raffle those off (on Nov. 27).”
The group is always collecting non-perishable food items for the food bank and a Christmas toy drive is currently ongoing. People can drop off toys until Dec. 18 at the Nisqually Moose Lodge, 1117 W. Yelm Ave.
On Dec. 18, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., a pop-up event will feature Santa Claus, who will hand out raffle tickets to the kids for the toys collected in the drive.
“Every five minutes, we are going to do a drawing for a free toy,” Nordlund said. “So every child that has a ticket, eventually will have something.”
Beyond charity, the group just likes to get together to create its own sense of community, which now includes Yelm.
“We do this to get together,” Nordlund said. “Mainly, we’ve made a lot of friends throughout (the events). It’s really nice to have somewhere where you feel safe and can show off what you can do.”
There is no cover charge for the events, with upcoming events occurring during the day on Nov. 27, Dec. 4, Dec. 11 and Dec. 18. More information on the events, and information for becoming a vendor, can be found on Facebook at the “Pop Up Vendors Galore” page.
“We want to get more known in the community and keep busy doing these events,” Nordlund said. “We are hoping to stay and get our name out there. I actually did talk to the Moose lodge and it looks like we are there throughout the year next year as of now.”
Those that want to sign up to be a vendor can email firstname.lastname@example.org or text 253-222-6831.
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