Happy's Flea Market not up to code

POSTED: 09:33 PM EST Dec 13, 2013 
ROANOKE, Va. -

Holiday shopping may not be the same for some of you much longer. A Roanoke staple is in danger of closing because the building is falling apart.

Happy's is still open to vendors and customers at this time but after 40 years it's suffered some major wear and tear.

The hope is that management can bring it back to life.

"It would be very hard for me to close it because this is all I know."

Edna Mirzayan and her family have had this space in Happy's Flea Market for almost 30 years. She hopes building code violations won't be what forces her to close.

"We all were worried yesterday. What are we going to do, what are we going to do? Because, we've been here, our customers, and we don't want to be out of a job," Mirzayan told Your Hometown News Leader.

The City of Roanoke recently posted this notice on the front door. First, extensive roof and electrical repairs must be made quickly, to avoid condemnation.

"I sort of have to trust that the city knows what it's talking about and I will do everything I need to do to keep Happy's in business," said Harvey Murdoch, Happy's Flea Market General Manager.

Then the notice outlines that the building isn't up to code or safe enough for public use until the problems are fixed.

"I'm sure as long as we continue to make progress, The City of Roanoke will work with us," Murdoch said.

There are also mechanical, plumbing and general repairs need. But, those can be done after the major repairs are complete. Management says it's making every effort to get the repairs done.

"Both myself and the current owners of Happy's are determined to keep Happy's the place of business that it has been in the Roanoke Valley for so many years," Murdoch told WDBJ7.

But it's the customers that are worried. To them, Happy's is a part of their history.

"I used to live an hour away and we would drive an hour just to come to Happy's. I just feel like it's a big part of the community and it would make everybody very sad if it was gone," longtime customer, Katie Fitzgerald said.