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Looking Back on the 2012 Show ~~ Jim Ford
Looking Back on the 2012 Show ~~ Jim Ford
Sep 4, 2012
LOOKING BACK ON THE 2012 SHOW
-- Jim Ford
When I had the privilege of recapping the 2011 Show, I thought that last year’s effort would be a hard act to follow in 2012. The organization for 2011 was outstanding, the dealers were more than satisfied with the way the fields were set up and the crowd attending the show was larger than in recent years.
However, after spending a portion of four different days at this year’s show, I have to take back all previous statements and say that this year’s edition of the Madison-Bouckville Antique Week was bigger and better than the last! Driving down Rt. 20 on Sunday and seeing the sea of tents set up from Troop’s Scoops Ice Cream Stand to the west end of Bouckville convinced me that the 2012 show would indeed surpass that of last year. And I was certainly correct in that estimation.
Let me begin by highlighting the show fields. Whether it was the Cider House Show Field, Indian Opening Acres or the Out Front Show Field all located near the center of Bouckville, or the Butternut Hill Antiques Show Field, Quaker Acres West or the East Expo Field located further to the east, each venue was well-designed and well-spaced. On many of the fields, the dealers had the choice of tents provided by the owners or to bring their own tent and create a personal display of their wares. Each field was filled to capacity and the variety of items for sale was overwhelming. All of the proprietors of the fields had obviously done everything possible to ensure that the dealers would be well-served and would want to return next year.
Other areas of Bouckville were filled with dealers also. The antique shops had dealers set up either in front of or on the sides of the buildings. Owners of individual homes along Rt. 20 also had dealer set-ups. No space was wasted and the entire atmosphere was one of cordiality. The antique shops had their usual friendly staff on hand and answers to questions concerning the various pieces for sale were sure to be given.
Another show of concern for those attending the show as dealers or as customers was the extensive number of hand-washing stations, showers, port-a-johns, ATM’s, a shuttle service for shoppers and on the Cider House Show Field, a playground for the younger children. A hearty breakfast was also offered daily and many took advantage of this to get the day off to a good start.
People from many different parts of the U.S. and Canada were in attendance at the show both as dealers and patrons. Conversations with many confirmed the fact that they truly looked forward to the week-long event and were very happy that the show was continued last year and again this year, and will hopefully continue for many years to come.
How about some comments from the dealers themselves? The most common statement was that the show this year was: “Like years ago when people attended the show to buy their favorite items and were doing so this year.” Another common thought was that: “This year’s show was a great success for them. It looked as though the economy had finally turned a corner and people were looking for those special items once again.”
There is another portion of the show that certainly brings people to Bouckville for the week and that is the food selection. This year was no exception! Traveling from one end of the show to the other we could purchase anything from kettle corn to cream puffs, chicken halves to burgers, lobster to tacos and homemade pies to ice cream cones. All of the food vendors were doing a lively business, in part because the weather cooperated nicely throughout the week.
It is interesting to watch the people going up and down the streets and to see what they have purchased. Our tastes are as different as there are individuals attending the show. Some favor glassware, others military items, while still others look only for furniture pieces. As each person’s home is unique, the shoppers are looking for items which will highlight that uniqueness in their own home.
Discussions with the dealers will offer an insight into the world of collecting and often leads to an interesting story about how they became a dealer, where their home is located and how they heard of the Bouckville show. Some attend the show looking for items to buy and then resell when they get home to other dealers who have customers for such items. Many were very happy to share their story. 2000 dealers, 2000 stories – it would make a fascinating sociological study, both in their personal story of collecting and also the number of hours spent preparing and packing for the show.
Of course my wife and I didn’t just aimlessly wander the show. We have a short list of items that we look for to add to our own collections. My wife found a beautiful antique basket and I found an addition to my maple sugar mold collection. It was a successful show indeed!
Another point to highlight is the chance to see old friends at the show. Whether they are dealers in the shops or people you run into on the street, it is the yearly chance to catch up with what friends are doing and if fortunate, to make new friends along the way.
You will view thousands and thousands of items at the show. Perhaps, if lucky enough, you will arrive at that “Ah Hah” moment when you least expect it. The item that you have been looking for was just ahead at the next dealer set-up.
Speaking of “Ah Hah” moments, don’t forget to keep checking the newsletter for more information concerning the June Antique Show, the Lang Auction of prime fishing equipment and the Auto Memorabilia Show and Sale. Dates and times for all of these events will be posted well ahead of the event.
And finally, but not least of all, a special thank you goes out to Madison-Bouckville Promotions the Antique Dealers Association and to their officers. Tireless efforts and the desire to do everything in a professional way have led to the continued growth of the show. We are all anxiously looking forward to 2013 and another successful show.
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