In an effort to help “budding food entrepreneurs and artisan makers,” the Downtown Market is launching a new program that will allow potential Market Hall vendors to test the waters before setting up shop.
The pop-up vendor program is available to individuals and small businesses on weekend dates.
While the Downtown Market in Grand Rapids has had temporary vendors before at events like the Made in Michigan Pop-Up Marketplace and the farmers market, this will be the first time pop-up vendors will have an opportunity to lease space in the indoor Market Hall.
The Downtown Market said applications are being accepted for new and startup businesses offering Michigan made "value-added food products and artisan products," as well as Michigan-grown products.
The Downtown Market said pop-up tenants sign a daily lease for space in the indoor Market Hall. The fee to operate is $45 per day.
Mimi Fritz, president and CEO of the Downtown Market, said one of the biggest barriers to a new food business is building a base of customers.
“Our pop-up program encourages established small businesses, or entrepreneurs just starting up, to test the market in a vibrant community of food businesses,” Fritz said.
The Downtown Market is modeling the program after ones at other markets like the North Market in Columbus, Ohio and Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia.