The influential role of the markets in El Paso

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Roman P. Carr

Many local businesses sell items such as soaps, jewelry, healing crystals, candy and more at El Paso markets.

Kristen Scheaffer, Staff Reporter

Art and farmer’s markets provide non-commercial options to El Paso residents while providing revenue to pop-up business owners.

Every weekend in El Paso, residents can attend the markets downtown and in the Upper Valley to browse the selections of small business owners from around the city. Due to these markets, business owners have an opportunity to promote their product to the community and get their name out there.

“Since moving here, I feel like El Paso is supportive of small businesses,” said Shianne Brown, vendor for the Butterfly Effect Ritual.

Businesses range from handmade soaps and jewelry to local honey and healing crystals, providing a little bit of everything for everyone. For some it’s a time to connect with one another.

“El Paso for me is more of a big town than it is a big city, and I say that with love, and there’s a lot of families if you look around, there’s people doing things together as a family and groups of friends. And that just contributes to another opportunity to get together,” said Adrian Aragones, owner of The Inked Family.

Some vendors mentioned participating in the Downtown Art and Farmers Market, the Upper Valley Artists and Farmers Market, Country Club Farmers Market, and the Punk Rock Flea Market.

Market day is important for a lot of vendors, spending most of their time preparing products for markets.

Melissa Escobar of Paw Bakery said her week consists of preparing treats for her business for the weekends in the Downtown market and the Upper Valley market.

“I do get orders during the week, which is when I don’t do markets, but it is way more on the weekends when we do participate in markets,” Escobar said.

El Paso residents attend the markets; many stating it gives small business owners an opportunity to grow in the city.

“I think it’s great because it supports, you know, small family-owned businesses versus large corporate chains and so, it’s an opportunity for people to get their product out there and in front of the local population,” said Marcus Williams.

“I think it’s bringing a lot more opportunity to people who are, you know, trying to start smaller businesses. I think it’s also giving a better opportunity to people looking to buy locally; keep our economy local,” said Breanna Noriega, resident.

“Thank you to people who support the local artists, local entrepreneur, and for folks who haven’t checked out any of the markets, come and check it out. You know, you’re missing out. It’s a good time if only just to get some fresh air considering all that we’ve been through, and still going through,” Aragones said.

Kristen Scheaffer is a staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected]