Second Street will close for Friday Fair

Langley will start a “Friday Fair” of vendor booths in a short stretch of Second Street this summer.

Organizers got an approving nod from the city council on Monday. Kent Ratekin will be the manager of the “village market,” and will collect the fees from the 14 vendors who have already agreed to take part.

The idea is to close a portion of Second Street from the end of the Star Store parking lot to the Langley firehouse from 3 to 7 p.m. Fridays. It won’t be a farmers market, however, because the focus won’t be mainly on produce.

Submitted vendor applications so far include ones for handmade soap, books, art and jewelry, flowers, fresh produce and a pizza booth.

Market planners hope to kick off the fairs on June 24, and hold them every weekend except the Friday during Choochokam (July 8) through the last Saturday in October. If the markets start that soon, it would give vendors two times to establish the event before it has to take a one-week hiatus for Choochokam.

Ratekin said drawing people downtown for a little street shopping may help boost business for merchants. The market will close on Fridays just as music events get underway nearby, at Island Coffeehouse and Useless Bay Coffee Company.

“It just would be kind of a kick to the weekend,” he said.

Booth fees have been set at $25, or 15 percent of sales, according to organizers.

Ratekin said the city would sponsor the fairs, and he told the council the city could help market the effort. Vendors would be expected to have business licenses through city hall, he added.

Ratekin said there is the hope that, eventually, the street market could be turned over to the Main Street effort in the future.

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