I’m spending a long summer driving the WorthPoint van to antiques and collectibles shows.
On stop four of my tour, I drove to the 36th Round Lake Antiques Festival, which was held on the grounds of the historical Village of Round Lake, New York. The village lies 25 miles north of Albany and about 10 miles south of Saratoga Springs in the beautiful Adirondack Mountains. With only 200 dealers, the Round Lake show is considered small on many scales, but don’t let size fool you. This show packs a big punch!
The crowd grew to 12,000 very quickly, even with the threat of inclement weather. This so-called small show had some of the most passionate collectors I have ever encountered. People knew what they wanted and were willing to spend to get it, whether they bought lawn ornaments, postcards, furniture, clocks, bikes or coins.
I meet great collectors everywhere I go, but these people seemed to enjoy the hunt and the purchase in a special way. I could feel the enthusiasm in the air, and I was intrigued by the behavior, so I began questioning the people who stopped by WorthPoint’s booth.
Eric Berthiaume is a local postal clerk who collects and sells vintage bicycles. Eric told me that collectors in the area are passionate about antiques and collectibles because there are not a lot of antiques and hobby stores nearby. Eric said local collectors dabble in unusual markets such as bicycles. And that’s when I learned my old Schwinn, the bicycle I abused as a child, is now a very pricey artifact.
We were rained out on Sunday. I packed up my electronics equipment at the booth and headed into Round Lake where I discovered Azusa Collectibles, which has the finest sports, stamps and comics setups I have seen in a long time.
I was charmed by this collectors’ haven. I told the owner he deserved a pat on the back for being one of the few people who still operates a collectibles store. He assured me there was ample business in all his specialties, thus confirming that it wasn’t just my perception of the Round Lake Festival—the people in this area are hungry for collectibles.
The 36th Round Lake Antiques Festival was a definite success. I would especially like to thank the event managers, Steve & Judy Allman, for all their help and kind words about WorthPoint. I also thank the people of Round Lake for sharing your beautiful town with 12,000 collectors. I had a great time.