Holiday market returns: Brownsville Chamber event promotes small business

A vendor displays her wares at a Brownsville Chamber of Commerce Small Business Holiday Market in 2019. (Courtesy photo)

The Brownsville Chamber of Commerce Small Business Holiday Market is back after taking the last two years off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The event is scheduled for 8 a.m. to noon on Dec. 10 in the parking lot of the Brownsville Events Center, 1 Event Center Blvd., just off Paredes Line Road between East Morrison Road and Ruben Torres Boulevard.

The chamber hosted its first Small Business Holiday Market in 2017 at its headquarters but this year chose a new venue in order to try and reach more people, said Danielle Rodriguez, the chamber’s director of marketing and programs.

“We’ve tried different locations,” she said. “We’re going to try the Event Center this year to see if it’s more accessible to the community. We wanted a high-traffic area.”

Rodriguez said the open-air market will be easily visible from Paredes Line Road, with plenty of room for vendors are “great weather” forecasted for the weekend. About 30 vendors had registered as of Tuesday, though Rodriguez said it’s typical for more to sign up just before the event.

The first Holiday Market was held in conjunction with the Mexican Consulate in Brownsville and the consulate is a main sponsor this time as well, she said. It’s all about supporting the city’s small businesses during the holiday season, Rodriguez said.

“It’s very important for our community to shop small and shop local business, that’s especially nowadays where everyone’s shopping online,” she said. “We really want to drive and promote small businesses. That way it keeps our economy going.”

Rodriguez said small businesses are vital to the local economy and that the chamber’s main mission is to “support and advance small business growth in our community.”

“The Small Business Holiday Marketplace is really the place for small businesses — artisans, crafters or people selling small items, especially for the holidays — to get out there and reach the community, to get the word out about their business,” she said.

Rodriguez said the chamber is still signing up sponsors for the event as well.

For more information or to sign up as a vendor or sponsor, contact the chamber at (956) 542-4341, email [email protected], visit the chamber’s Facebook page or stop by chamber headquarters, 1600 W. University Boulevard, between 8 a.m. to noon or 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. before Dec. 10.

“We have been getting a lot of messages through our Facebook page, so if anybody wants to message us through Facebook we can assist them that way as well,” Rodriguez said.

She said the chamber is expecting a good turnout from the community.

“We’re just excited to have the marketplace back,” Rodriguez said.