Day of Event Load-In & Load-Out Details


  • Load-in for full spaces begins at 6:30 am. 
  • Load-in for half spaces begins at 7:00 am. 
  • Load-in for special circumstances or pre-paid full-season vendors begins at 6 am  (If you have special circumstances, you already know.) 

Line up at your appropriate time (no earlier).  We need to stagger entry to keep the street and aisles clear. So, if you are a 1/2 space and you are in line at 6:30 am, you will be asked to leave the line until 7 am. 

Once you enter, pull your vehicle into your space, unload, and move your vehicle to the top floor of the garage.  If you have a half space, you'll have to back into your spot to unload. If you have two vehicles, you must enter and unload one at a time. 

If you are pulling a trailer, you must be in a full space (2 parking spaces) OR you have to load-in from outside the show floor.

Load-in is stressful for everyone! Rudeness or disrespect to fellow vendors or VGC staff is unacceptable. Treat others how you expect to be treated. Keep your cool, follow the guidelines and ask for assistance if things go awry.  Here's a quick sample of what NOT to do during load-in. 

Mistakes will be made. It's inevitable, but we always strive to do our best to make our vendors comfortable and happy. When a mistake happens, we will work quickly to remedy it. If you're rude or disrespectful to others, if you pack up early or treat customers or staff poorly, you will be uninvited from ever doing a show with us again. Preventable misery will not be tolerated.    Read - Why load-in makes vintage dealers crazy HERE. 

If you have a non-urgent issue, suggestion or comment, email us after the show with a run down of the situation. If we can prevent it from happening again, we will.  

  • All vendors must be inside the Garage by 8:15 am. Late vendors will not be permitted to sell and will not receive a refund. 
  • If you need to remove your vehicle from the garage and park outside, it must be moved by 8:30 am.
  • The clearance for the Garage in Evanston is 7' 6".  A car, cargo van or truck of normal size will fit. Loading from outside is not permitted.
  • Spaces are rented with room for a vehicle up to 18 feet long keep with you should you choose to. 
  • If you have a full space and are using two vehicles, load-in must be staggered one vehicle at a time!
  • Unloading from the aisle is strictly prohibited due to fire code. Aisles must be open for emergency vehicles at all times.
  • Moving cars and people in close quarters is dangerous.  These steps may seem inconvenient, but are established for all of our protection.
  • If you are in a half space, pull in and unload behind you.
  • If your vehicle is larger, let us know in advance so we can get you in a little earlier.
  • There is no electricity.  If you need it, you will have to provide your own (quiet) source.  (We have a Jackery it's been good)
  • There is no Wifi in the garage, but we seem to get signals easily for running credit cards.


  • Packing up begins at 4 pm, NOT A MINUTE EARLIER.
  • NO VEHICLES CAN MOVE BEFORE 4:15 PM. This is non-negotiable. Customers are still often walking around and none of us can afford the consequences of an accident or injury. The City of Evanston is very safety-oriented and will be monitoring these things.
  • Everything that comes in with you must leave with you. Please REMOVE ALL GARBAGE. Small garbage can be disposed of in garbage cans provided, but larger quantities must leave with you. This garage is owned and monitored by the City of Evanston. Let's make it easy for them to love having us.
  • No vehicles should ever be parked in the aisles.
  • Vendors with corner spots must be mindful that merchandise is not extending past your designated spot where vehicles can make contact with your merchandise. We are not responsible for damage to your merchandise for any reason. 
  • If you have an issue with load-out, wait until things calm down or you can speak with somebody about your question/situation. 
  • We are all exhausted and ready to get home at the end, but things will go much smoother if you are patient. With everybody loading-out at once, you will often have to wait for fellow vendors to leave to be able to move your vehicle in and load-up. 

MISC (and worth repeating)

  • There is no electric. It's a garage, not an event space. Bringing a quiet generator or battery lighting is a good option. 
  • Spaces are assigned ahead of the show. Assignments are given at the gate.
  • Bring a cooler with drinks and snacks. There are very limited options (and sometimes none) onsite.
  • Elevators cannot be used for loading.  
  • There is no WIFI and we can't guaranty that you will get a signal.
  • There is no ATM onsite.
  • Porta Potties and hand wash stations are on first floor.  They are delivered at 6:00 am that day, so they clean and tolerable.
  • Dress appropriately!! Temps in the garage can vary greatly. Layers are always a good option, especially on your feet. even if the weather is good in the morning, it can get chilly later. Remember, this is Chicagoland. Anything is possible. 
  • Besides early morning load-in, no moving vehicles are permitted on the 5th floor for any reason before 4:15 pm.
  • Don't leave unwanted merchandise or garbage behind.  If you do,  you won't be invited back.  Leave your space exactly how you found it.
  • If you have a specific space you want to be in each month, you must make a deposit or have pre-paid for the entire season to keep it. Without a deposit, all spaces are subject to reassignment.
  • Deposits and booth fees collected in advance are critical for marketing, permits, insurance, rentals, etc. Please pay as far in advance as possible to help keep the Garage going for all of us.

Don't forget to invite your customers to our website or Facebook page.

Jim Sands is the head of operations. Email, or text him at 586-295-0979.

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