By John Singleton
Dont weegret Wee-Cycle. The kids are growing up its inevitable but no need to fret. At Wee-Cycle Mart moms can turn their nearly new toys, clothes, and furniture into a profit.
As kids outgrow their stuff, our consigners sell cribs, strollers, books, DVDs, sports equipment and other items at affordable prices so that other families can enjoy them, said co-owner Clair Dobry. Anyone can be a consigner. It can be a great way to make some extra money and clear your house of clutter.
The Pasadena mother-daughter combo Clair Dobry and Blainey Spinelli started their moveable consignment business in the fall of 2007 in the basement at Our Lady of the Chesapeake Catholic Church in Pasadena. The original event attracted 40 consigners and about 100 shoppers. Today, Wee-Cycle Mart sponsors nine shopping events annually at different geographical locations in Baltimore and Anne Arundel County.
There are four events in the spring, four in the fall and one all-season event in July. With an average of 200 consigners and 1,000-1,500 shoppers per event, the little business founded in a church basement has retained a loyal following.
What differentiates us is that our customers tell us how organized we are, said Spinelli. We also always make sure our events support local charities and the local food bank.
From toddlers to teens, Spinelli attests Wee-Cycle Mart is about keeping down the cost of growing up. Spinelli, (neé Dobry) graduated Chesapeake High School in 1987 and has two children. Clair, her mom and business partner, has three children and seven grandchildren. When it comes to kids, these ladies know their business.
My daughter has clothed two children by attending Clair and Blaineys events, said Esther Winkler of Glen Burnie. For somebody who doesnt have a great income in this economy, its a great way to keep your kids in clean clothes and quality items. Wee Cycle Mart will not allow rips, stains, or tears on any of their clothing. The quality control for these events is outstanding.
Approaching their 34thevent on Feb. 24-26 at the old SuperFresh in Perry Hall, Dobry and Spinelli will work 20 hours a day during the week of the mega-sale. Wee-Cycle Mart rents different unused space in large shopping malls every season and requires a minimum of 30,000 square feet per event to house the enormity of items on display. Its a complex logistical process that takes three-and-a-half days to stage a three-and-a-half day shopping extravaganza that customers find clean, comfortable, and civilized.
At a Wee-Cycle Mart event you can be a consigner and a shopper in the same weekend and never leave the Wee-Cycle Mart, summarized Carrie Bradke of Fort Meade. It allows you to make some money and reinvest that money in things that your family needs.
Anne Arundel County will experience Wee-Cycle Mart mania May 4-6 at the Cromwell Field Shopping Center in the old Caldor store. Activities are free with a Wee-Cycle Mart admission of $2 or $1 and a food donation, and there is no cost for children. For more information visit www.wee-cyclemart.com.