Once upon a time in the mid-1970’s, there arose kicking and screaming from the belly of rock and roll a new sound of music – this sound was called Punk, and its followers were called Punks.
Punk music was defined by great bands such as The Ramones, New York Dolls, Talking Heads, and Iggy and The Stooges here in the US and the Sex Pistols, The Damned, UK Subs, and The Clash across the pond in the UK.
The style of Punk was more of a DIY – whatever looked and felt good to wear. Painted on leather jackets and shirts, safety pins adorning torn up and tattered clothing, with sayings written and patches sewn onto clothing to brand it as “Punk”.
The iconic fashion designer Vivienne Westwood arose from the Punk subculture. She made clothes for Malcolm McLaren’s clothing boutique aptly named “SEX”, which provided a meeting place and “home” to the Sex Pistols.
Most importantly, Punk was – and still is – an attitude.
Do what you want, as long as you love it and have a passion for it.
Be who you are without fear.
Speak your mind through words, fashion, art, and music.
Acceptance is an almost universal vibe in the Punk subculture.
To me, this attitude is what Punk Rock Flea Market is all about.
A while ago, while surfing the web for articles on the Punk subculture, I ran across the Punk Rock Flea Market advertisement for Trenton, NJ. I was instantly pulled in and read more about what this new shopping experience was all about.
After trying my luck with a few small alternative art shows in the Cleveland area, as well as selling on various online platforms, I was about to give up until I stumbled upon this idea.
Soon my searches became more in-depth and I found PRFM’s in Philadelphia, Seattle, El Paso, and even one in Mexico! This was such an awesome concept, I thought to myself. We need something like this in Northeast Ohio.
I researched the concept more and found it to be a gathering of amazingly unique indie businesses, artists and vendors, who all had an alternative vibe going on with either their merchandise or with the consumers who would buy their merchandise.
For a feel of what other shows are about and what they grew into, I’ve compiled a small list of a few of my faves, which I have modeled PRFM Lorain after. Imitation, after all, is the sincerest form of flattery!
The Punk Rock Flea Market in Trenton, NJ gathers over 200 vendors under one roof, plus over a dozen food trucks, for two days, three times a year. They have been listed as one of the best flea market’s in the country and their organizer Joseph Kuzemka was named the Trentonian Person of The Year for putting events like PRFM together.
Punk Rock Flea Market Philly is one of the biggest in the US – gathering over 700 different vendors for three days – the best part is that each day has totally different vendors! One admission fee gets you in for the entire weekend! Rodney Anonymous from the Punk band, The Dead Milkmen, is known to attend and tweet live from this event.
Seattle’s Punk Rock Flea Market combines vendors with bands and all the fun that accompanies a live show. Their PRFM’s are marketed with three simple words: bargains, bands, booze. Despite there being booze, this PRFM and all others as well, are all ages and family friendly.
It is my hope that PRFM Lorain County can grow into a big festival with bands, food trucks and hundreds of different vendors from all over Ohio – but one step at a time! We have an amazing and dedicated volunteer committee committed to the growth and success of PRFM Lorain.
We are growing so fast with not only our shows, but we have dedicated ourselves to constantly evolve and remain relevant.
PRFM Lorain County has plans for a crowdfunding to help us acquire the space we need to open a counterculture arts center with a coffeehouse which will offer arts, music, and writing classes for the public, including local children. We want to help change the landscape of Lorain County while giving back to the community.
As an alternative flea market, we have outgrown our former location and are moving on to bigger and better options! We are able to grow because of the wonderful support from the community. Our success hinges on all of you and for that, we thank you!
Stay tuned to our site and make sure you follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to get the latest updates! Always remember to support your local indie and small businesses and artisans and SHOP LOCAL!
If you are a local business or organization interested in getting involved with PRFM Lorain County, please see our Media PR page and fill out the contact form so we can get you in on the ground floor action!
Laura Bock, an old-school punk/goth hybrid, is a writer and photographer from Lorain, Ohio. A self-proclaimed Jane of all trades, Laura is a recovering 80’s hairspray addict and prefers her Doc Martens and combat boots over a pair of heels any day. In addition to her blog, Laura’s writing can also be seen on The Tattooed Buddha, Elephant Journal, Rebelle Society, Be You Media Group, and Pucker Mob. She was also a featured writer with the now defunct webzines, Indie Chicks and Skirt Collective.