Retail Therapy: Thrift shop blossoms into Fresno vendor mall

The Fresno BeeJune 14, 2014 

The Mall @ Hidden Treasures sells used items from 40 vendors at 1649 N. Blackstone Ave.


What started as a thrift shop on Blackstone Avenue has exploded into a 10,000-square-foot mall with 40 vendors selling everything from antique sofas to comic books.

The Mall @ Hidden Treasures is at 1649 N. Blackstone Ave., just north of McKinley Avenue, and sells vintage items, antiques, collectibles, home decor, clothing and other household items.

It may seem like an odd location for such a big mall — but the business isn't what the owners had planned. Cara and Richard Howard took over what had been a thrift shop run by a church in a small portion of what was a storefront church.

But pretty soon vendors were hitting up the Howards to rent space in their storage area. So many vendors came that when Open Door Ministries left, Hidden Treasures expanded into what had been the sanctuary, pastor's office and nursery. (That's why you'll still see Noah's Ark painted on one of the walls.)

Now it sells all kinds of items from a variety of vendors. It's the type of place you want to give yourself time to search through.

There's old Iron Maiden and other rock T-shirts, along with kids' clothing, such as flip-flops embellished with colorful fabric.

Upcycled furniture is increasingly finding a home at stores like this, and you'll find repainted vanities and refinished dining tables at Hidden Treasures.

The Howards' 14-year-old son sells comic books for $1, and Richard Howard created a "man section" with vintage fishing poles and bar signs.

An independent store connected to the mall buys, sells and trades video games, along with stocking DVDs and Hot Wheels cars.

The couple encourages its vendors to keep prices low, which is why you'll find a $7.50 piece of wall art that looks like it came straight from Target or a large $50 mirror with an ornate frame.

The store has a few spaces left available for vendors.

Hidden Treasures is open seven days a week, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays.

Details: Find them on Facebook or at (559) 777-3636.


The columnist can be reached at (559) 441-6431, or @BethanyClough on Twitter. Read her blog on

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