PERRY, Ga. — Vendors are busy unloading their trucks for Vintage Market Days, which opens August 30th at the Georgia National Fairgrounds.
Lynn Fleming, the promoter, brought the market back to Central Georgia last year. She said there will be live music and hundreds of vintage goods to choose from.
They'll have everything from home décor, furniture, jewelry, and even some sweet treats. Fleming said they have vendors from 13 states driving in to set up booths.
"We try to create an atmosphere that creates memories with family and friends, and we hope everybody has a great time," said Fleming.
Those vendors aren't the only ones working hard at the market.
The HALO Group of Middle Georgia works to train adults with autism and other developmental disabilities and place them in jobs. Executive Director Angela Cuti said they loved working at the market so much back in April, they couldn't wait to get back.
"It really inspired them to get out and be hungry to find what their skill sets are and what their special abilities are and to help us find viable employment options for them," said Cuti.
The students with the HALO group will help load and upload vendors' trucks, hand out wristbands, and assist customers by carrying purchases to their cars.
Cuti said working in the community is an incredible learning experience for them.
"You can learn a lot in a classroom, but we all know a lot of people learn better when they are hands-on in the environment," she said.
Cuti said opportunities like this gives the students a chance to practice making eye contact with customers, work on their verbal skills, and provide customer service.
"One of the things I want to reinforce, if possible, is the value of being given a chance," said Cuti.
She said she is always looking for those chances to give her students.
Cuti says they will receive a donation from the market and that money will go towards the New Perry Hotel construction and purchasing a food truck to give the students a simulated work environment.
The HALO Group purchased the New Perry Hotel about a year and a half ago and she said they hope to have it up and running by the end of 2020.
Vintage Market Days is open August 30th and 31st from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. and September 1st from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the McGill building at the Georgia National Fairgrounds.
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