|Local business owner plans to bring ‘mini-mall’ to Russells Point|
|Written by Joshua Keeran|
|Friday, 25 May 2012 14:50|
RUSSELLS POINT – Eight months after opening G&L Flea Market, owner Gary Krouskop decided he had bigger dreams in mind for his business. This Memorial Day weekend, phase one of his plan to bring something unique to the residents of the Indian Lake region kicks off when Krouskop’s flea market opens in a new location at the former Gem Manufacturing building at 8127 state Route 366.
Along with the move from his previous location just down the road at 7992 state Route 366, Krouskop has also renamed the business G’s Marketplace.
“When I opened up last September at the old Tinsley’s IGA, I had ideas for other businesses in mind like not only the flea market and a farmers’ market, but also opening up an old retro 50s and 60s diner, souvenir shop, arcade, craft store and boutique,” Krouskop said. “These ideas were something that couldn’t be done at the other building, but my new location is laid out just perfect for what I have in mind. It was a heck of a deal, too.”
To make his dreams a reality, Krouskop said G’s Marketplace will come together in phases.
“We are starting with the flea market first,” he said. “Once it is up and operating, we are going to go on to phase two and start working on the four stores, those being a souvenir shop, arcade, craft store and boutique. Unfortunately, the very last thing to open will be the diner.
“The business will be like a mini-mall of sorts with something for everyone,” Krouskop added. “I think we are giving people a lot more options here than we were at the old building, and I think people will really love it once we get it all done.”
Customers will get their first look at G’s Marketplace this weekend with the grand opening of the flea market portion of the business.
Those familiar with G&L Flea Market will notice the move to a new location has allowed Krouskop to add more booths and give patrons more of a selection.
“We are going from 23 inside booths to 32 inside booths here at G’s Marketplace,” he said. “We will also have 28 booths outside.”
As for the operation of the four permanent stores and retro diner inside G’s Marketplace, Krouskop said he will be hiring employees to work in each of the stores.
“With the souvenir shop, we are bringing back the old Indian Lake pennant, which hasn’t been around here for years,” he said. “I had a couple people bring in two original pennants, one that dated back to 1936. My buddy and I are going to mass produce the pennants, so we are bringing them back for sale.
“We are going to be selling a lot of the Indian Lake souvenirs that used to be sold in stores around the lake,” Krouskop added.
As for a completion date, Krouskop is hopeful G’s Marketplace will be fully-operational within a few months.
“All the stores and diner will be open sometime this year,” he said. “I may not hit the busy season this year at the lake with the diner, but I would say everything should be completed by the end of August.
“The outside of the building, however, is going to take some time to finish. We are going to make the building look retro with black and white checkerboard at the bottom, and we are going to build an aluminum overhang around the building,” he added. “The sign will also be a retro sign. It will be 21-feet tall, and it won’t be missed by those who drive past.”
Odds are the owner himself will be hard to miss when stopping by the business considering the new location also features an upstairs apartment that Krouskop now calls home.
“I see living on-site as an advantage, and so far everything is working out great,” he said. “I have 3,000-square feet upstairs, and I moved my daughter and family up here, so they will be working here with me.”
Hours, vendor information
As of now, the flea market is the only portion of the business that is currently operational. It’s open six days a week from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.
Once the planned stores like the boutique and arcade inside G’s Marketplace are up and running, Krouskop said each one will be open every day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The diner will open at 6 a.m. every day and close at 10 p.m.
Based on the response Krouskop has received from vendors since moving his flea market business, customers can expect a full house as booth space has become a hot commodity.
“My phone has been ringing like crazy, and people have been stopping in asking about getting a booth,” he said. “We are getting outdoor vendors like crazy. I don’t think I will have any problems keeping them rented.”
Krouskop said even if all booths are accounted for, he continues to look for vendors so once a space becomes available, it won’t be vacant for long.
Those interested in renting a booth can call 419-204-6829 or 614-843-3550.
In anticipation of increased traffic to his business, Krouskop has already purchased the property directly across the street. Currently, the property is home to the Smith Building, which was built in 1946 and once served as the original location of Tinsley’s IGA. Krouskop has decided he will demolish the building next year and use the property for parking.
“It will be a big venture to come, but it will make one huge parking lot,” he said.
As part of this weekend’s grand opening at G’s Marketplace, Bikes for a Cause is hosting a car and bike show in the business’ parking lot on Saturday. Registration for the show begins at 9 a.m., and there is a $10 registration fee.
The event will feature a DJ, concessions, silent auction and door prizes will be given away. All proceeds will benefit the Travis Flores Children’s Foundation, which helps children unable to leave the hospital for long periods of time.
“Weather permitting, we are expecting a pretty big turnout,” Krouskop said.
For more information on the car and bike show, contact Faye Milonich at 597-1037.
|Last Updated on Friday, 25 May 2012 14:53|