For more than a century, the Second Monday Trade Days in Bowie have been an historic shopping tradition in Texoma. Now they are expanding their grounds into the new Bowie Community Center, which is having its grand opening ceremony tomorrow.
Bowie Parks and Recreation Director Clyde Johnson says the heat has taken a toll on the vendors and shoppers. This is a key part of Bowie's economy. The Second Monday Trade Days brings in more than 300 vendors and thousands of people. Johnson says the vendors are coming in earlier because of the heat, and setting up and everything. And the crowds come out earlier because of the heat. It gets too hot in the 100 degrees in the afternoon; it kind of slows down." But the new 20,000 square foot community center allows spots for more than 80 vendors. Johnson says, "We can attract them with the air conditioner for the vendors and the crowds to come out. And hopefully it'll help everything and make everything work good."Johnson says it will be a great benefit for the citizens of Bowie. He says, "The building will bring in different types of new vendors, and some of the old vendors that want to move in. It'll really help with the economy."
The Bowie Community Center was not only built for Second Mondays, it's also a multipurpose event facility. Its manager Jeff Tate says the facility has space for all types of events. Tate says, "One as a theater format, another as a banquet format, which we will be having a banquet for Bowie's Main Street program I think at 5:30 tomorrow. And then we have another format in another hall set up as a farm and ranch expo." The Bowie Community Center is having its grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony from 2 to 4 p.m. tomorrow. The Bowie Community Center will be a part of the Second Monday Trade Days for the first time next weekend. The events are always the weekend before the Second Monday of every month.