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home : community : community Friday, April 29, 2016

11/18/2009 Email this articlePrint this article 
Hmong Community Opens 2nd Flea Market on East Side of St. Paul

By Amy Doeun

Two of the owners , Cher Chai Vang and Wa Chue Vang proudly stand in front of the Hmong Village building on the East Side of St Paul. (Cheu Lee / HMONG TIMES)
Beginning in January 2010 the community will have a 2nd option for flea market shoppers. On July 24, 2009 Wachue Vang, Cher Chia Vang, Yia Vang and Chia Xa Vang purchased a building on Johnson Parkway just north of I-94 on the east side of St. Paul. This building had been used for St. Paul Public School offices, but with budget cuts the district was liquidating the building. The four equal partners saw an opportunity and jumped at it.

Currently the site is being remodeled, including increasing the parking lot from 170 spaces to up to 400. The partners have a vision for a multi use space including professional offices (real estate, insurance, chiropractic, etc.), food court, flea market-including produce stands, and a banquet hall that can accommodate up to 700 people with plans to open in spring 2010.

Already the building is 50% occupied, mostly with office space. The flea market will open in January 2010. Market shoppers can find 16 food court options, 1 bakery, 3 consignments, pre-packaged food vendors, 28 fresh produce stands and 250 general merchandise booths; including hand made items, clothing, cooking utensils, videos and music and much more.

The building is 107,000 square feet and much work is currently being done to get ready for the public. Office rentals go from $400-2000 a month, $700 for produce, General merchandise $500-600. If you are interested in renting a space call (651) 797-8677.

The owners hope that this new site will offer options for the Hmong community to be a gathering place and social life for the community.

In the Twin Cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis there are about 80-100,000 Hmong people. This community holds 3 major festivals a year, the St. Paul New Year Celebration, the Minneapolis New Year Celebration and the 4th of July Freedom Celebration.

For over 8 years the HmongTown Flea Market on Como Ave in St. Paul has been a gathering place for the community. The weekends and evenings find this market packed year round. Recently Toua Xiong, owner of the market, purchased the space he had previously rented and hopes to initiate his own festival.


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