By Lena Mitchell
Daily Journal Corinth Bureau
TUPELO – Retailers and vendors in Tupelo Furniture Market Building 1 are open only periodically, but the business they attract is well worth it.
The Furniture, Gift and Home Accessories Show – in its fifth year – offers shoppers a wide range of products to choose from. Retailers will be open through 7 p.m. today, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.
Natalie’s Jewelry and Gifts has found a permanent retail space along one wall of the building’s main showroom.
“I came into this space about a year and a half ago after I lost my husband,” said owner Natalie Riley. “I would always exhibit at Celebration Village and a holiday bazaar in Starkville, but I like this because I don’t have to worry about loading and unloading.”
Riley also is open for the monthly Tupelo Flea Market and Craft Show, usually the second Friday through Sunday of the month.
“I started out making my jewelry and it just grew from there,” Riley said of the eclectic display of a huge variety of jewelry, personal and decorative home items.
Gourmet coffee connoisseurs can pursue their passion while also helping support a missionary cause when they buy from My Brother’s Cup.
Owners Mike and Kay Pittman use most of the profit from the gourmet coffees made from pure Arabica beans to pursue their mission work in remote parts of Asia.
“We support foreign and local missions,” said Kay Pittman, “and are celebrating 20 years of preparing a meal each year for the Ronald McDonald House in Memphis.”
Before founding the business in 2010, Mike Pittman worked for Weyerheuser for 25 years, Kay Pittman said. The Columbus plant closing was announced about the time Mike Pittman was on a mission trip in China, in a region known for growing coffee beans.
“He didn’t even drink coffee, but a friend suggested he think about coffee as a business opportunity,” Kay Pittman said. “We prayed and asked the Lord to lead us, and He put people in our path to help and teach us.”
They’ve been able to accomplish a lot through the business, and last year Kay Pittman left her job after 32 years with the Sara Lee Corporation to work in the business.
In addition to the furniture market, My Brother’s Cup is open for the monthly flea market and the coffees are also sold at the Neon Pig Café on North Gloster Street in Tupelo.
This fall furniture market is the fourth time Glitz Galore-N-More of Fairhope, Alabama, has exhibited at the Tupelo Furniture Market, said owner Toni McCulley.
The previous three times have been at the spring market, and she’ll return in October for the annual Celebration Village to support Sanctuary Hospice House.
“Usually Saturdays are our best days, and we see lots of people and do really well here,” McCulley said.
Coming from the Alabama Gulf Coast for the Tupelo show might seem like a pretty long distance, but McCulley said she, her daughter and her parents – who all share the business – really enjoy traveling around the country to different shows. Last month they were in Kentucky and will go to South Carolina next weekend.
“It’s a lot of fun meeting people like that,” McCulley said.