Skip to Main

First 'Community Impact Pop Up Market' a success

A Traverse City venue is helping prop up businesses struggling as major road construction near the downtown area has kept people away.

Flat Cap Ventures held its 1st ever ‘Community Impact Pop up Market’ Saturday and Monday at its building on US 31 near Chums Corner.

In addition to the construction already happening on Grandview Parkway from South Garfield to Division Street.


Road crews are working on a new round-about at Garfield and Potter Road. The intersection will be shut down until late June.

Another round-about will also go in down the road at Potter and Hoch Road. The county road commission hopes these roundabouts will cut down on crashes.

Flat Cap Ventures came up with the idea about a month ago after businesses started feeling the sting of the construction.

Leisa Eckerle-Hankins owns the oldest original cherry store in Traverse City, Benjamin Twiggs. She said she is being impacted by the ongoing construction.


“It was like COVID came all over again. People aren’t sure that they can get to us, which we’re actually easily if accessible but they kind of want to stay away from the construction just because who wants to get in the construction mess,” said Eckerle-Hankins.

With construction just a block away and sales down 15 to 20%, she said she jumped at the chance, being one of the first to sign up.

“It gives us that extra ability to be on the Chums Corner side of town. So, people who particularly don’t want to come to construction or don’t come to that side of town all the time, it’s just another opportunity for exposure,” said Eckerle-Hankins.

At the nearby Detroit Wing Company, operating partner Heather Patrick also reported that times have been rough, with sales dipping about 30%.


“We get no foot traffic in front of the store right now, whereas usually it would be pretty busy so that people that would be walking by to check us out, we’re not getting that,” said Patrick.

Patrick said they are relying heavily on catering and online orders. She said the pop-up was an opportunity to get her business out there and to network with her peers.

“It’s great to see the other businesses that are facing the same issues and it’s nice to just have that face to face with them, to have that connection, to know that we’re all in it together,” said Patrick.

Judy Harrison, co-owner of Flat Cap Ventures said that was part of the vision in addition to promoting area businesses.


“The connections have been wonderful. That’s what we wanted. They’ve never maybe been to their downtown location, and so they’ve now discovered it and they’re going to go.

For customers like Kathy Hy, the pop up was a great idea to get to businesses she hasn’t seen in a while.

“You can’t get there easily. I know there’s a circuitous route, but I thought, I’ll just do it later,” said Hy.

Harrison said they are the perfect location for a pop-up because they are away from the construction, have ample space and lots of parking. She said they may have more events in the future.

Local Trending News