An established and well known El Paso flea market is making a comeback after a three-year hiatus.

The Bronco Swap Meet on Alameda will re-open at the end of the month after code violations forced it to shut down in 2020.

Show of hands, who else is looking forward to the Espiropapas, bootleg movies, and knockoff jerseys?

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El Bronco

The Lower Valley landmark has been a part of our city since 1985.

Many El Pasoans have fond memories of wandering among the hundreds of vendors with family and friends on Saturdays and Sundays eating elotes and papas on a stick, drinking an ice-cold beverage, and shopping for things you didn’t even know you needed.

Known affectionately as ‘El Bronco’ the swap meet is easily identified by the iconic bronco head sculpture in the parking lot.

The horse head, by the way, was sculpted in 1950 for the Bronco Drive-In Theater by the father of Luis Jimenez, Jr., who would later sculpt the Los Largartos in San Jacinto Plaza.

Life Safety Issues

The long-time flea market was compelled to close in 2020 after an overnight fire in August of 2019 prompted an investigation by the city.

Code Enforcement discovered numerous electrical and gas code violations deemed “life safety issues” by then-fire chief Mario D’Agostino, now the Deputy City Manager for the City of El Paso.

The out of compliance issues eventually led to the years-long closure of the flea market while management came up with a plan to address the long list of code violations.

El Bronco Gallops Again

With its glow up complete and after passing all inspections, The Bronco Swap Meet is set to reopen on Saturday, September 30, and I for one can’t wait.

You can’t buy paintings of La Virgen and pirated Selena tees just anywhere, you know.

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