When the Moonlight Market kicked off this spring, I was immediately excited about the monthly event taking place on Gay Street. So I'm pleased to announce the Moonlight Market will be extended through December.

When the Moonlight Market kicked off this spring, I was immediately excited about the monthly event taking place on Gay Street. So I’m pleased to announce the Moonlight Market will be extended through December.

“Adding October, November, December makes a lot of sense,” said Walker Evans, event coordinator of the Moonlight Market. “We thought, ‘Let’s throw something together and see what happens; do a little experiment and let it be bare bones.’ It’s been really well received.”

Moonlight Market was indeed a simple concept; collaboration between the businesses along Gay Street to hold a monthly event with pop-up street vendors. The brick-and-mortar businesses agreed to stay open late. Vendors apply (on a first come, first serve basis) and set up on the street and sidewalk.

The result was a boon for both the businesses and the pop-up vendors. Evans said a number of brick-and-mortar establishments have reported record sales days during Moonlight Market — which is one of the reasons for the extension — but the experience from a customer standpoint is also favorable.

I like to think of the Moonlight Market as Gallery Hop without all the hassle and people. (I am a noted misanthrope.) And much like Gallery Hop, there are a couple of good spots for a drink, only with much less intemperate folks to deal with.

It’s a tranquil stroll with intermediate perusing of clothes, jewelry, candles, arts and crafts, etc.

My cache of goodies for under $40: Two records (notably George Harrison’s Thirty Three & 1/3), two T-shirts (one a baby blue Beach Boys 1985 Tour shirt that was too small, much to my chagrin and joy of my petite companion), sunglasses and a button-up. Score.

The Moonlight Market is ideal for a date night. You can grab a meal and cocktail at one of the restaurants, then hit the street for a little shopping — and flirting, if you’re doing it right — under the stars.

I’m sure many of you will experience Gay Street at its most electrifying during Independents’ Day this weekend. Don’t forget to come back for more easy-going Moonlight Market.

Photo by Meghan Ralston