Registration open for annual SWKS Antiques Appraisal Fair

A crowd looks on during the 2018 Southwest Kansas Antiques Appraisal Fair. This year’s event is set for March 9.

Registration is open for the Seventh Annual Southwest Kansas Antiques Appraisal Fair scheduled for 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 9 in the Finney County 4-H Building at the fairgrounds in Garden City. 

The fair is an all-day show, where participants are welcome to bring family heirlooms and keepsakes to be shown and shared live before the audience. Appraisers include nine local collectors, dealers and others with expertise in antiques.

Appraisals are $15 per item, on a first-come/first-served basis, and spectator admission is free. Those who pre-register with payment by March 1 may bring three items for $36. 

Early registration is available at the Finney County Historical Museum, 403 S. Fourth St.  Hours are 1-5 p.m. daily.  For more information call 620-272-3664.

Registration is also available at the museum after March 1, and until 2 p.m. at the door the day of the show, all at the $15 item rate.

Last year’s audience came from all over western Kansas and the Oklahoma Panhandle, sharing 125 objects, including a Civil War-era smoking pipe, newspapers from the 1870s, a 19th Century silver tea set, a Franklin D. Roosevelt campaign button, a variety of toy metal cars and trucks, an “I Like Ike” car tag, an 1896 set of bone china, a 1910 model typewriter and an 1890s wax cylinder phonograph.

Crocks, Depression glass dishes, leaded crystal and a variety of additional sets and pieces of tableware crossed the stage. There were also numerous china pieces, teacups, pocket watches, mantle clocks and toys. Onlookers also shared geisha, Shirley Temple, baby and Native American dolls, a vintage accordion, a set of documents signed in the 1840s, glass globe gumball machine, a Disney movie poster and a carved oriental chest.

An enamel-on-metal Santa Fe Trail bus lines sign earned an award as the most valuable item, and later sold in an estate auction for $7,500. 

On March 9, the doors at the 4-H Building will open to the public at 8:30 a.m. and the fair will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., or until the last item is appraised, whichever comes first. 

Pre-registered items will get first priority, and those who register should provide printed pictures of their keepsakes. The museum staff can photograph items during registration for those who prefer.

Evaluations will be conducted individually and one by one before the audience, so spectators can choose to come and go, or stay and watch throughout the day. No artifacts will be bought or sold, but the appraisers will offer non-binding spoken estimates of value for each item, while sharing their knowledge about the history of each piece. 

Nearly any antique, vintage or collectible items may be appraised, except coins, fine jewelry or firearms.

Flat Broke Barbecue will offer food and beverages during a lunch break and throughout the day.

Appraisal Fair proceeds support programs, research, artifact preservation and exhibits at the Finney County Museum.

​Primary sponsors include American Warrior, the Finney County Convention and Visitors Bureau, The Garden City Telegram, the Vernon and Wilma Solze family, Steve and Rhonda Stone and Larry Johnston Auction. Major sponsors are Golden Plains Credit Union, High Plains Public Radio, Homestead Assisted Living, Pishny Financial Services LC and Valley State Bank.

Additional sponsors include John and Angelica Chappel, Dave Tabor Construction, Garnand Funeral Home, Neil Hawley Agency – American Family Insurance, Oswalt Appraisals and Unger’s Heating and Air Conditioning.  Edward Jones Financial Advisor Lora Schneider is providing prizes for the items of greatest age and value, as well as the most unique.