Nashville hosts weekly shopping market for local black businesses

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Every Sunday in Nashville, black-owned businesses come together to show off their craftsmanship. the Wedge Weekly Market For Black-Owned Businesses aims to help businesses recover from the pandemic.

Shop Black City Tour has announced a partnership with the Wedge Building to open the Wedge Market. Starting Feb. 20, the weekly vendor fair offers local, black-owned businesses a chance to showcase their wares.

Greg and Tee Westbrook are the founders of Shop Black City Tour and the weekly market.

They’ve created a digital marketing company that focuses on content creation and a national organization that facilitates safe spaces for black small business owners.

“One event a year is cool, but what do you do the other 364 days as a business owner? So the idea behind the weekly market was to give businesses the opportunity to generate regular revenue on a weekly basis,” said Greg Westbrook.

In 2021, the Shop Black City Tour was a success.

“We did a recount with 718 businesses in 2021 – generated over $300,000 in revenue. For us, that was mind-blowing,” Tee Westbrook said.

Tee Westbrook said the goal for this year is to generate $1 million.

But they wanted to do more, and they did so by bringing more than 50 local black vendors to an indoor market in Nashville.

“If you were to come on a Sunday, there would be basically over 50 black-owned businesses selling any type of item you want, from clothes to beauty products to food. We have lots of food vendors different for different drinks,” said Greg Westbrook.

The Westbrooks say they knew the best place to host the weekly black-owned business market.

“The Westbrooks have a vision to bring this market to town. We love supporting this type of effort,” said Juan Vega-Romero, owner of the Wedge Building, the space where the market is held. “It’s the best feeling you can have coming to work, isn’t it? Knowing that you’re actually helping others and seeing the smiles on people’s faces, knowing that you’re making their lives a little bit better.”

Vega-Romero understands the challenges of being a minority business owner and he says he’s happy to help.

“It’s important to the community, we feel like that. So it’s more than just a business for us,” he said.

The Wedge Market is held Sundays from 4-8 p.m. in the Wedge Building at 2020 Lindell Ave in the Wedgewood neighborhood of Houston.

The Shop Black City Tour for vendor events kicks off in Miami on March 19.

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Peggy P. Gilmore