College of the Desert Swap Meet | Palm Desert CA | November 20, 2010

Real Estate Agent with Solutions Real Estate CalBRE License #01490977

A Visit to the College of the Desert Swap Meet in

Palm Desert CA

College of the Desert Street Fair in Palm Desert CA

The College of the Desert Swap meet in Palm Desert CA is an amazing shopping extravaganza.

Are you thinking flea market? Hardly.

In fact the term swap meet does not do justice to this incredible open-air shopping experience that takes place every Saturday and Sunday from 7 am until 2 pm at the College of the Desert in Palm Desert California. There are 340 spaces for vendors during the tourist season (October through May) and about 100 in the hotter summer months from May until September.

Officially called the College of the Desert Street Fair, there is an amazing array of stuff - handbags, artwork, glassware, jewelry, food items, clothing, home furnishings, puzzles, hats, watches, patio furniture, golf accessories, fresh produce...the list goes on and on. The photos below will give you just a glimpse into this shopping mecca that attracts 15,000 - 20,000 shoppers every weekend. Not hard to see why.

Even if you are not a big shopping enthusiast, the College of the Desert Swap Meet is well worth the visit. I had a chance to visit yesterday while in Palm Desert for an overnight - I highly recommend it!



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  1. Carol Lee 11/21/2010 10:03 PM
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Elyse Berman, Boca Raton, FL
Realty Associates, Boca Raton, FL - Boca Raton, FL

Hi Jeff,  This looks like a great place to get lost shopping for a few hours!  I've noticed that on the west coast these markets are called swap meets as opposed to the east coast where they're known as flea markets.  We have flea markets that sell new high-end goods as well. 

Nov 21, 2010 02:16 PM #1
Kat DeLong
LAKEVIEW REALTY, Lake Arrowhead. 909-273-4542 - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor BRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

I LOVE swap meets... you find the coolest things. Wish I were nearby, I'd be there!

Nov 21, 2010 02:23 PM #2
Jeff Dowler CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad

Elyse - the terminology is confusing and misleading, although some swap meets/flea markets are glorified garage sales while others ARE pretty upscale, but with great prices.

Kat - it ws great fun to see. Easy to spend hours even if you are just browing.


Nov 21, 2010 02:42 PM #3
Jack Mossman - The Nines Team in Lodi
The Nines Team at Keller Williams - Lodi, CA
The Nines Team in Lodi

Jeff:  Wonderful post and dramatic pictorial!  It did get me started thinking about the slideshow versus fixed pictures with captions or voice over videos.  You use all three media with excellent production results.  Do you have an opinion regarding which media produces the highest number of consumer results? 

Nov 21, 2010 03:19 PM #4
Lynda Eisenmann
Preferred Home Brokers - Brea, CA
Broker-Owner,CRS,CDPE,GRI,SRES, Brea,CA, Orange Co

Hi Jeff,

The COD swap meet is such a fun thing to do, made a few purchases myself. And the "food court" even has live music.

Nov 21, 2010 09:45 PM #5
Carol Lee
Dilbeck Real Estate - Oak Park, CA
Realtor - Agoura, Oak Park, Westlake CA Homes

Jeff- that looks like a great swap meet- and just in time for the holidays!  And nice job with the slide show.

Nov 21, 2010 10:00 PM #6
Jeff Dowler CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad

Jack - that's an excellent question. I don't have a specific opinion myself except to say that using more than one modality is better - text plus photos plus video. But we keep hearing more and more that video is increasingly popular, and less text is better, too. I suppose it also depends on the topic. Hmm, a thought for a post.

Lynda - well we were pretty good, but we had to grab a few things. We will go back...probably before the holidays with our shopping list.


Nov 21, 2010 10:00 PM #7
Fran Gatti
RE/MAX Coastal Redwoods - Crescent City, CA
Realtor, CDPE, RDCPro - Crescent City CA Real Esta

Saw you in CAR magazine today.  Great article and wonderful plug for AR. 

Nov 22, 2010 01:09 AM #8
Bill Gassett
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Hopkinton, MA
Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate

Jeff it looks like this event will be a great time for those looking to pick up something interesting.

Nov 22, 2010 07:51 AM #9
Lee & Pamela St. Peter
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices YSU Realty: (919) 645-2522 - Raleigh, NC
Making Connections to Success in Real Estate

looks like a place to shop to me!!!  Thanks Jeff for highlighting the event in Palm Desert!

Nov 22, 2010 09:22 AM #10
Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional
Charles Rutenberg Realty - Palm Harbor, FL
Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor

Jeff - I am starting to think that I live on the wrong side of the country! This looks like so much fun!

Nov 22, 2010 04:22 PM #11
Elizabeth Cooper-Golden
Huntsville Alabama Real Estate, (@ Homes Realty Group) - Huntsville, AL
Huntsville AL MLS

Jeff, I'm not much of a shop meet gal, but this one looks like a whole lot of fun.  Those mountains are amazing!  Oh my gosh...this is on my list of places to go SOON :)

Nov 22, 2010 09:13 PM #12
Jeff Dowler CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad

Carol - thanks. It would be a tremendous place to shop for the holidays. That IS part of the plan.

Thanks, Fran. I was flattered.

Bill - it has to be one of the most amazing swap meets/flea markets I have seen.

Pamela - oh, yes, indeed. Even if you are just lookin'.

Barbara-Jo - well at least you can enjoy it on-line. LOL

Elizabeth  - the views alone are worth the visit.


Nov 22, 2010 09:32 PM #13
Rebecca Gaujot, the Go To Realtor®
RE/MAX Vision Quest - Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV Real Estate, Greenbrier County

Jeff, wow I would have a field day and my husband would not be able to find me for two days :)

Nov 23, 2010 10:56 PM #14
William Johnson
RE/MAX Associates - San Diego, CA
San Diego Real Estate Voice, GRI CRS e-Pro CDPE

Hi Jeff,

I am well acquainted with the Swap Meet and you are so right that it just doesn't fit that description. I have been going there every year at least a few times in February and enjoy the atmosphere and the terrific fruit, vegetables and flowers available there. Quite a place.

Nov 24, 2010 04:11 PM #15
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Jeff Dowler CRS

The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad
What's my Carlsbad CA Area Home Worth??
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