The organizers of the Chattanooga Market have been considering the possibility of a seven day-a-week storefront showcasing “all things Chattanooga” for years.
Chris Thomas, executive director of Chattanooga Public Markets said, “The ability to offer a brick and mortar space for tourists and locals to enjoy Market goods all year long has finally come to fruition.” Thanks to the staff at River City Company, the vacancy at 2 Aquarium Way provided an opportunity that met both parties’ objectives.
“When the River Place building returned to our control nearly a year ago, we wanted to use the space in ways that would benefit the downtown community. Having the Chattanooga Market General Store open daily to the public will provide visitors and residents a distinctive shopping experience that supports a variety of local artisans all in one spot. Whether you find a beautiful painting to hang in your home or pick up a sweet smelling candle as a gift, this General Store will highlight many of the wonderful craftsmen and businesses in our community,” said Kim White, president and CEO of River City.
The new General Store will provide an outlet for Chattanooga makers to sell their artistry more broadly. The current downtown Market, at First Tennessee Pavilion, is at capacity for vendors each Sunday. The additional retail space at Aquarium Way makes it possible to include the works of additional vendors. Customers to the retail location will be able to buy original art, pottery, artisan foods, Chattanooga-themed gifts, snacks/drinks as well as some sundry items. “We want tourists to get a glimpse of our tremendous artistic community, and at the same time be able to find necessities to make their stay or visit downtown more enjoyable,” said Mr. Thomas.
“River City’s goal is to continue to build and grow an authentic Downtown Chattanooga with a unique sense of place. And what could speak more to that then our partnership on a storefront in the heart of our community in the Tennessee Aquarium Plaza that highlights a cornerstone of our city – the Chattanooga Market,” said Ms, White.
The General Store is expected to open in coming weeks for the summer season and store hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sunday, from 12-5 p.m.