One-of-a-kind finds will be in abundant supply over the Fourth of July weekend, as antique dealers display their wares up and down the valley.
Items ranging from estate jewelry to fishing creels will draw thousands of people to the area's antique shows, which have become both legion and legendary.
For many, the appeal lies in discovering something unusual. For others, it's simply a relaxing way to spend time with friends and relatives.
"It's something the whole family can take part in," said promoter Bill Summers. "A wife can look at some jewelry or items that can go in the house. A husband can look at vintage hunting and fishing items or Western Americana. Couples can go in together and have a good time looking around."
Dealers from all over the country will be a part of MC Presents' Ketchum Art & Antique Show in Ketchum. Offerings will include antique furniture, jewelry, oil paintings and bronze art, said promoter Mary Nyholm-Vidano.
"And there'll be a snowcone guy," she added.
Hailey's Antique Market boasts more than 75 dealers, with booths indoors at the Hailey armory and outside at Roberta McKercher Park. Vendors will have saddles and spurs, cast-iron garden items, vintage clothes, oak furniture and high-end rugs to lure shoppers.
"They always bring a lot of goodies," said promoter Alee Marsters, calling the offerings "from the ordinary to the extraordinary." Food vendors also will be on site.
Blue Cow Antiques & Appraisals is promoting Hailey's Main Street Antiques, Arts and Crafts Show, which promises more than 50 booths of antiques, log furniture, beads and Western and rustic home decor. Some new vendors will be part of the show, said promoter Dana Jo Cameron. Espresso, Dutch oven edibles and jewelry repair also will be available.
The social aspect is a large part of the appeal for visitors to Rebecca Prohorenko's house in Bellevue. Prohorenko and her business partners are holding the 11th annual Merry Birthday America Event at Rebecca's. Besides quilts, furniture, laces and linens, the hosts will offer free cookies and lemonade—to the tune of nearly 2,000 baked goodies.
"We have a lot of people who come here for the social thing," Prohorenko said. "We get more and more people every year. It really is fun."
Promoters and dealers say having so many shows in one area is good for them, good for the community and good for shoppers.
"I love the Wood River Valley," Cameron said. "People come from around Idaho to come to these shows and to go camping and do all the other stuff. There's room for all the shows, and people hit them all."
Hit them all
- Ketchum: MC Presents the Ketchum Art & Antique Show, at Forest Service Park, Washington Avenue and First Street. Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday, July 1, through Sunday, July 3; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday, July 4.
- Ketchum: Bill Summers' Ketchum Fourth of July Antiques Show, nexStage Theatre, 120 S. Main St. Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday through Monday.
- Hailey: Alee Marsters' Hailey's Antique Market, Roberta McKercher Park on state Highway 75 across from the airport, and indoors at the Hailey armory. Hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday through Monday.
- Hailey: Blue Cow Antiques & Appraisals' Hailey's Main Street Antiques, Arts and Crafts Show, Main Street across from Albertsons. Hours: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday, July 1, and Saturday, July 2; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, July 3.
- Bellevue: Merry Birthday America Event at Rebecca's, 313 N. Second St., between Birch and Cottonwood streets. Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday, July 1, through Monday July 4.
Rebecca Meany: email@example.com