Published: November 5, 2002
By Tom O’Hara
NASHVILLE, TENN. – The Radisson at Opryland hosted Music Valley Antiques Market, October 17-19, and more than 110 antiques dealers set up shop offering antiques with primarily an American heritage. Technically, this fall’s visit is the second return to the original site as in its early years, the market was in the same facility but its management was a Ramada Inn. Thus the event was nicknamed the Ramada Show.
Started in by promoter Ann Jennings, the show eventually was offered to Steve Jenkins, promoter of the Tailgate at Fiddlers, and Richard and Lilly Kramer, who produce Heart of Country. They formed a partnership and hired Kay Puchstein and Steve’s son Jon to run it. It quickly became the popular alternative to the elegant Heart of Country and the simple Tailgate at Fiddlers, all three held twice each year on overlapping dates in October and February.
Set up for the show is in guest rooms, a center atrium, a small ballroom and several conference rooms. Former hotel management had a change of heart deciding it did not want the wear and tear of using hotel guest rooms for exhibits. This led to moving the show out of the hotel to a parking lot across the street. Just last February the hotel management invited the show back.
This has turned the show into a wonderful maze of nooks and crannies for dealers’ booths. There are antiques exhibits all over the place — in guest rooms, conference rooms, the atrium and the ballroom.
Music Valley, as it is now known, is the middle of the three antiques shows in Nashville, opening a day after Fiddlers and the day before Heart of Country Antiques Show. It is walking distance to both of the other shows and customers invariably cover all three shows as one is never enough. Their biggest concern is “have you seen it all?” for the best additions to their collections.
This fall Music Valley had a great collection of antiques and early collectibles. Gary Holt and Steve Christianson are dealers with homes in Kansas and Montana. They come with great early pieces, often including store fixtures from the Midwest and West dating back to the Nineteenth Century.
First time exhibitor Marc Witus of New Jersey set up in the ballroom with a wide variety of antique accessories. Virginian Toby Chittum, who trades as Charley Horse Antiques, brought some early furniture to one of the conference rooms.
Neverbird Antiques is the business name for Bill Subjack. He and his wife Joyce are collectors of American folk art, especially samplers, many worth over $10,000 which he brought to a conference room.
The next Music Valley will be February 13-15 at the Radisson. In addition to numerous hotels and motels, there are also campgrounds nearby for trailers, motor homes, etc.
For information, Kay Puchstein, 813-545-9199, or Jon Jenkins, 317-598-0112.
5 Church Hill Road / Newtown, CT 06470
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