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Flea market bounty abounds.

Byline: Andrea Damewood The Register-Guard

SPRINGFIELD - With his flip-up sunglasses, comfy chair, cash register and even an adding machine, it was clear that Andrew Miller knew his outdoor sales.

Miller, 13, a three-year sales veteran, laid out his Pokemon cards in neat rows - on sale for a quarter a pop - and finished off the ambiance with the Pokemon TV show theme song playing out of speakers hooked up to his Sony Walkman CD player.

Now for the customers.

"I don't know where they are," he said. "I think it's too hot."

Miller and about 10 other aspiring entrepreneurs braved the scorching sun Tuesday to sell their wares at the Kids' Flea Market outside Springfield City Hall on Tuesday.

Clustered in the shade, it wasn't so bad, really.

Spread out on blankets and set up on tables, just about anything a kid could want was on hand - Barbie dolls, a flute, puzzles, a microscope and even a couple of armadillo stuffed animals. Most were asking between 25 cents and $1 for their treasures, but the prize stuff - like a four-person full picnic basket set - was $5.

The flea market, now in its fifth year, is part of the Springfield Public Library's summer reading series, and although commerce may not seem to be tied to the literary arts, the market is still a learning experience, said Barbara Thompson, youth and adult services manager at the library.

Bargaining, making change and setting prices are skills children may pick up along with their extra pocket cash, she said.

And clutter control at home is a bonus for parents, Thompson said.

"I've had some moms say that nothing is going back," she said, laughing.

Miller said in past years at the flea market, he's pulled in $15 or more selling his extra cards.

Thompson agreed that the heat may have hurt business.

"It's a little slow so far," she said. "I think the hot weather is giving people second thoughts about going outside."

Still, the 90-plus degree temperatures at noon didn't stop Lori Loy and her two children, Benjamin, 9, and Clarissa, 5, from doing a bit of selling and buying.

"They really have a lot of fun selling things," Loy said. "The children's program is wonderful here."
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Title Annotation:City/Region
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jul 29, 2009
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