Suddenly the entire world has moved online/virtual. The COVID 19 outbreak has broken the world the way none of us could even dream of. None of the physical stores, restaurants remain open including schools and colleges. Initially, all the businesses took a hit as the world took a while to realize and recover from the Pandemic. So now that everything is going virtual to ensure social distancing, flea markets have also started showing their online presence.
Did we ever think flea markets can go online? I don’t think we did. So here in Bengaluru, we have one of the first The Grand Virtual Fair that is happening in the Independence Weekend. The carnival and fair all rolled into one by visiting @thegrandvirtualfair channel on Instagram.
The Grand Virtual Fair is presented by the Olakk Group, a soap-making MSME, and Vault O Viands home bakers owned by Ann Correa. Susan and Ann are two 29-year-old women who have been school friends from their days in Sacred Heart Girls High School. Both of them being bench mates to organizers of this virtual carnival/flea market have tried to bring back the flea market culture that Bangaloreans have known and grown to love.
The purpose of The Grand Virtual Fair is to promote small local businesses with the hashtag #vocalforlocal and #supportsmallbusinesses. “During the Pandemic, we are trying to promote all the local markets by basically going vocal for local online, on Instagram, an app used by youth and the aged alike especially post lockdown,” said Ann Correa.
Ann and Susan have been successful in giving away great offers, and discounts after talking to their 30 odd vendors on the virtual flea market. Products ranging from soaps, home bakes, world cuisine, organically grown microgreens, designer handbags, fashion labels like Kkristina, and much more have been roped in for the same.
Fun workshops on DanceYoga, Tarot, Karate, Crafts, Coffee Painting and much more have been organized too. The event is ticketed by Book My Show. “Do enjoy and celebrate Independence Day with us,” says Susan.