Published: September 13, 2011
Tom Tarry and his staff from The Results Group produced their first antiques show, the Madison-Bouckville Antique Festival, August 18′1, with more than 600 exhibiting antiques dealers. The show was held on the same site as the original Madison-Bouckville show, and it did resemble the previous event †but it was different. Tarry had a site plan that was so similar to the prior show’s that minor differences created some confusion for exhibitors and shoppers.
The days and hours for this show were expanded, with most exhibitors unloading and beginning their setup on Wednesday, August 17, and early bird shopping started at noon on Thursday for a $29 fee per person or $50 per couple. Friday was confusing, as dealers were allowed to enter the field at 8 am, early bird shoppers at 9, and free, general admission began at 10. The confusion was because there were some signs and handouts that did not differentiate the early bird buying from regular show hours. And then, as this was the first year the show was open for shoppers on Thursday, there were some who came Friday and were disappointed to not be first into the tents.
The site is entered on its north side along Route 20, the road connecting Madison and Bouckville, two small hamlets south of Utica, N.Y. In an open, gently rolling valley field, the promoter had nine very large tents, each configured for 16 to 22 exhibitors. These tents were surrounded by more exhibitors in spaces for their individual tents or covers. The east side had exhibits from show sponsors and parking, while the west side had more individual tents. South of the exhibit area was additional parking for several thousand vehicles.
At first, exhibitors were somewhat disgruntled over changes from the past years of operations at the field, but as the customers came in, their moods improved, and steady sales for the majority of them improved the mood even more.
For example, Jim Johannes of Marques Antiques, Barto, Penn., reported very good sales for the five days of the show, including Wednesday during the dealer setup day. He said his sales “were mostly to other dealers, both [exhibiting] at the show and taking it away.” He added, “My furniture sold well, but the stoneware and smalls made the show for me.”
Susan and Jerry Hartman, East Bridgewater, Mass., were offering a stack of early blanket boxes, all in original or early paint. Customers could either pick by a color or a size; they were all in pine, in good early condition, but the green box with markings from Richmond, R.I., sold. In fact, a personal matter forced the Hartmans to leave the show Friday, but their neighbor in the next booth looked after the business and sold some antiques in their absence.
Ron Broughman said he was hoping to sell the furniture he brought, but “really sold smalls and the only big piece was a tall case clock.” His business, Caulkins House Antiques, Metamora, Mich., has been exhibiting here for many years, usually selling furniture, but he described the market as “different this year with all the business news lately.”
Paul Martinez Antiques, Westminster, Mass., was offering a large collection of Wilhelm Kagel pottery. Kagel, a highly accomplished potter, according to Martinez, was active in post-World War II Bavaria, and his work is not found very often outside his home area. “Form is important, but also the paint decorations and color have a large influence on the value,” said Martinez .The collection ranged from $200 to $800, with several special pieces in the upper range. An ovoid vase placed high on a top shelf was especially dear to Martinez due to its coloration, hand incising and vertically striped design; it was priced at $425.
Chelsea Hill Antiques, Hampton, Conn., had a great show, according to owner Tom Nagy. Sales included a tall case clock made about 1830 and grain painted by Rufus Cole in the vicinity of Albany, N.Y. Among other weekend sales was a cantilevered lid desk, mahogany with inlays, circa 1860, and a green velvet covered Victorian lady’s chair.
According to Lou DeFusco, pieces in his diorama were carved from prehistoric wooly mammoth bone and ivory about 1900. His price for the set, comprising two Eskimos, the elk and the ivory log they were on, is $4,000. The dealer, from Cocoa, Fla., was offering it for the first time; it came from a private collection.
Don and Marta Orwig, Corunna, Ind., continue to find the unusual. Here they were offering a showcase with a large human-looking molar advertising a dentist’s services. It was in very good condition, ready for any dentist’s office window. They also found a tall hutch in paint decoration, which Don said was Italian, Nineteenth Century.
Jerry Milne, Root Cellar Antiques of Port Ryerse, Ontario, Canada, offered an early tall pine cupboard in early paint with its original hardware.
Not all dealers come to the show to just sell, and Kay Rolland, Geneva, N.Y., was stocking up on fresh inventory as well as selling some of her own. While she did not sell the big furniture in her exhibit, she did sell many valuable small antiques, including a faux grain painted miniature chest.
Old Country Antiques, Hightstown, N.J., was showing very hard-to-find pieces from its inventory of yellowware. Offerings included a large batter bowl with pour spout, a butter dish, a colander, a mold and many more pieces, as well as standards such as assorted sizes of mixing bowls.
A collection of grass baskets and Native American beaded bags and accoutrements were among the collection offered by Jonna and Robert Austin of Stratford, Texas.
Paul Bishop of Cat Daddy Antiques, a shop in Jonestown, Penn., was offering a large collection of painted furniture from his area. A blue painted corner cupboard was in milk paint outside with a red paint inside, in hardwood. Alongside it was another cupboard, also in the blue milk paint.
Scott Candello, The Sword and The Pen Antiques of North Wales, Penn., was offering an interesting collection of paper †used Wall Street paper, that is. On one of his tables were piles of old capital stock certificates, most from old railroads which today would be wall paper; worthless in the financial market, but good conversation pieces.
Joe Weaver, Catskill Antiques, Delhi, N.Y., was offering a large collection of early iron candle lights, including one footed sheet iron adjustable candleholder from the Seventeenth Century.
The experience for Tarry and his staff in producing other shows assisted them in creating their own trademark with the biggest show in the little wide spot in the road known as Madison-Bouckville, where the antiques shows just grow.
After obtaining the right to use this hayfield as a show ground, Tarry was determined to make his new show a better version of what had been the largest and longest running show of the week. In comments from several exhibitors, in spite of a few first-time glitches, Tarry and his crew were successful, creating a good show. Tarry said they will have a few more changes or corrections for next year; essentially making sure his customers, the dealers and their customers, the shoppers, are well informed and well accommodated for the show.
The date next year will be the same third weekend of August. For more information, www.madisonbouckvilleantiquefest.com or 888-334-2856.
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