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Is it legal to set up a booth to sell homemade crafts on the side of the road?

Andrew Dunn

It depends on where you want to set it up. Cities and counties all have different rules on roadside vendors.

In unincorporated ares of Brunswick County, roadside stands have not been allowed since July 2010, when county commissioners instituted a crackdown on them after years of turning a blind eye. Code enforcement officials were directed to hand out $100-a-day fines to roadside vendors who stayed open. Some towns in the county, however, do allow roadside vendors.

New Hanover County is a little more lenient, senior compliance officer Steven Still said, but the rules are still complicated.

Regulations for craft stands depend on the property’s zoning and the size of the operation, he said, but are fairly strict.

Produce stands, Christmas tree lots or pumpkin sales areas are more likely to be legal.

Still said he recommends people wanting to set up a roadside stand call the county’s planning and zoning department at 798-7165 to make sure the operation is allowed.

Pender County is similar.

Regulations also depend on where the stand will be and what will be sold, said Kyle Brewer, director of the county’s planning and community development department.

In general, the vendor would have to submit a minor site plan and keep any structure up to building code.

Brewer, too, recommends calling the department at 259-1202 to make sure.

Related links:

Do you have to have a permit to sell food from a roadside booth?

Where are the local farmers’ markets?

User-contributed question by:
Marc Griffies

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