CLEVELAND - The early morning fire at the West Side Market in Cleveland on Wednesday means the vendors will be missing out on much-needed income, so two local businesses are stepping up.
No one was injured during the blaze, but the market is closed until further notice because of heavy smoke damage and soot covering many of the stands. The produce building of the market was permitted by the city to open on Friday, however, many vendors decided to stay closed to support others.
Market Garden Brewery will be serving up a special beer to raise money for their neighbors. From 4 p.m. Friday until Tuesday, $1 from every Market Recovery Lager sold, 310 gallons, will go to the Market Vendors Association to help them recover their losses.
"We had this beer brewed, it was done fermenting, we hadn't given it a name yet," said Sam McNulty, owner of the Market Garden Brewery and Distillery. "It dawned on us that we should take this beer and kind of use it as leverage to raise money for the vendors and the repairs that are going to be needed."
Meanwhile, in the Gordon Square area, Happy Dog will be giving $1 from each hot dog served to the vendors and their employees.
Happy Dog co-owner Sean Kilbane frequents the Market's Sebastian's Meats and Anne Marie's Dairy.
"These people are a big part of our business and help us keep our business operating day to day, week to week, so we want to help them out," he said.
Super Bowl weekend is a huge time for sales at the West Side Market since people are stocking up on snacks for their football parties. All of the food inside the market has to be thrown out and inventoried for insurance purposes.
Others are planning a cash mob to give vendors a financial boost, but no date is set since it's unclear when the market will reopen.