Akron’s First Punk Rock Flea Market To Be Held August 13 At Lock 3

AKRON, Ohio — Akron’s Punk Rock Flea Market will debut this Saturday, August 13 from noon to 6 p.m. at Lock 3 in downtown Akron.

Admission is free to the market, which features more than 60 alternative artists, vendors, artisans, and independent small businesses from Akron and surrounding communities.

The market is organized by We Are The Weirdos Ohio, a company founded by Rachel Raymond and Math Byler after discovering that their alternative graphic clothing company, Xraeart Clothing Co., was not quite suited to traditional manufacturer markets.

“The shows we were at for Xraeart Clothing were really well put together, but our demographics just didn’t show up,” Byler said.

“We realized after doing some of the shows in the area and the vendor events that we were kind of the weird ducklings among the people who came to these events. We realized we wanted to create more opportunities for alternative artists and small businesses in our area to come together and be able to sell what they want to sell,” Raymond said.

Math Byler, left, and Rachel Raymond founded We Are The Weirdos Ohio last year after discovering that their alternative graphic apparel company, Xraeart Clothing Co., wasn’t quite suited to traditional maker markets. The duo organized the Punk Rock Flea Market Akron to create more opportunities for alternative artists and small businesses to sell their wares.

The duo set to work creating Akron’s first Punk Rock flea market. Although the punk rock flea market is new to Akron, the concept is not – the first such market debuted in Trenton, NJ, and other markets soon followed in larger cities such as as Philadelphia, Seattle and Reno, Nevada, Byler said.

“When I came here from Philadelphia – and I’ve always been going to the punk rock flea markets in Philadelphia and Trenton – and we started the clothing business, we went to the one in Philadelphia and we sold there- down. We made more money there than three or four shows in Ohio,” Byler said.

The duo credits the Downtown Akron Partnership with being instrumental in creating the event, which is sponsored by the City of Akron, Byler said.

Products for sale include vintage clothing, original art prints, oddities, baked goods, original graphic clothing, macabre creations, handmade jewelry and collectibles. The market will feature live music, food trucks, a beer truck, contests and raffles.

It was important to Raymond and Byler to keep vendor fees low for the show and to offer free admission to attendees.

“We try to be very vendor-friendly because we are vendors ourselves,” Byler said. “And we want people to come down, have fun, experience the show and walk around and shop and not have to worry about a little bit of their money being taken away from them for show admission.”

The bands scheduled to perform at the event are:

  • Late and a half, 1:10 p.m.-2 p.m.
  • Home & Hotels, 2:30-3:20 p.m.
  • Down like you, 3:50-4:40 p.m.
  • The Sublets, 5:10 p.m.-6 p.m.

In addition to hosting the market, Raymond and Byler will offer their apparel company’s alternative graphic apparel and quality crafts such as leather wristbands and collars and hand-sewn backpacks and bags. The duo’s products are inspired by their love of punk, grunge, goth, emo, metal music and fashion.

After the flea market, We Are The Weirdos Ohio seeks to create more opportunities for alternative artists, vendors, artisans and small independent businesses, according to Byler.

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Diana J. Carleton