Saturday, February 17th was a beautiful day for the 41st annual Cabin Fever in Quechee, Vermont. The weather couldn’t have been nicer, in spite of the snow the night before. Dealers who did the show reported good sales and a good crowd. I also have it on good authority that the food offered by the caterers was excellent.
April 22nd brings us the Lebanon Antiques Show and Sale at the Fireside Inn and Suites in West Lebanon, New Hampshire. The show will feature 28 exhibitors from all over New England offering a great variety of antiques. The hours are 10am to 3pm and admission is $6.00.
Mark your calendars for the 52nd Vermont Maple Festival Antiques Show coming up in St. Albans on April 28th and 29th. The show opens on Saturday, 10am to 5pm and continues Sunday, 10am to 4pm. Admission is free. The show is at the St. Albans Town Educational Center, 169 South Main Street, St. Albans. The Maple Festival show features a great variety of antiques, including country, primitives, folk art, silver, chocolate molds, and fishing and hunting items. It is part of a city-wide event celebrating Vermont’s maple syrup harvest. The Vermont Maple Festival is a non-profit group whose objectives are to contribute to the educational and promotional aspects of the maple industry. There are festivities throughout the town and fun for the whole family.
It’s always interesting to me to learn the paths that people have taken to becoming dealers. Celine Blais (Celine Blais Antiques) and George Johnson (George B. Johnson Antiques) had very different careers before getting into the antiques business. Celine was a radiology technician for 39 years and George was a teacher for 35 years. George’s interest in antiques was piqued when he took some items he inherited to an adult education class at a local school in hopes of learning something about them. He was fascinated by what he learned and started going to local shows and buying a few things of interest. You can guess what happened next—he started doing shows in the summer, adding more shows along the way and became a full-time dealer in 1977. Celine’s interest in antiques came when she married George. They do a number of shows in Vermont and other New England states, as well as New York and Pennsylvania. While George concentrates on only doing shows, Celine has booth space in a group shop in downtown Montpelier. They both deal primarily in country items. George still has the first antique he bought—a cherry dovetailed knife tray with canted sides. They like the antiques business for the relationships they have formed over the years and the interesting encounters with people from all over. George relates a story that happened a few years ago when a man came into his booth and saw his booth sign: he said “George?” He was a fraternity brother he had not seen in almost 50 years! I guess George has not changed much in these 50 some years! George is very active in the Vermont Antique Dealer’s Association and is currently serving on the Executive Board and the Show Committee for the Vermont Antique Dealer’s show that takes place during Vermont Week. Celine and George are both hopeful for the future of shows and the antiques business feeling that at some point people might once again value the more personal experience of being able to see and actually handle what they are buying in addition to buying online. Online buying is here to stay but there is still a need for shows and shops where objects can be seen and touched and questions asked and answered.
I look forward to hearing from members with news of what is happening in your shops and shows and other news that you would like to share with your fellow dealers.
Vesta Urband firstname.lastname@example.org