CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Photographers, painters, a jeweler, a potter, a weaver and a baker are among the vendors who plan to sell their wares Saturday at the grand opening of the East End Bazaar, the outdoor artisan market at the corner of Ruffner Avenue and Washington Street.
While teams of volunteers spent more than 1,300 man hours this summer building the market from the ground up, East End Main Street director Ric Cavender was on site earlier this week, checking on some last-minute details.
"I'm putting in the rest of the gravel and getting the signage up," Cavender said. "We'll have a monument sign at the corner and two hanging signs on both sides of the stage.
"The city just came. They donated two benches -- really nice benches. They're on the Washington Street side of the property. And we're cleaning up, getting all the dirt hauled away."
Planning for the market dates back to at least spring 2011, and the project has gone through a few changes since then. The size was cut in half from original estimates of up to two dozen booths, with two anchor booths now, not three.
It will be open just Saturdays this year; Sundays are out for now.
"We're going to build our base, build vendor confidence," Cavender said. "So we're just going with Saturdays."
Ned Savage, an Americorps VISTA volunteer working this year with East End Main Street, coordinated the construction team as the market's manager.
"We might extend to Sundays next year, depending on interest," he said. "We just decided to build momentum and excitement."
Savage also has led the recruitment of vendors and musicians, who will perform each week on the market's stage. For opening day, he's got an all-star lineup.