Registration open to approach the evaluation fair – Garden City Telegram


The Southwest Kansas Antique Appraisal Fair, returning after a year-long COVID hiatus, will be held at 9 a.m. on March 12 in the 4-H building at the Finney County Fairgrounds.

Hosted by the Finney County Historical Society, the Appraisal Fair is an all-day show where attendees bring heirlooms, keepsakes, and even yard sale finds to share live and one-by-one in front of the public.

A team of volunteer appraisers, made up of local collectors, dealers and other experts in artifacts from the past, will offer an appraised value and discuss the details of each item that crosses the stage.

The fundraising event is not affiliated with the public television program Antiques Road Show, but comparisons are often made.

The event has taken place most years since 2012, but was canceled in 2021 when the location was preempted for COVID testing. In 2020, people converged from Dodge City, El Dorado, Garden City, Holcomb, Ingalls, Lakin, Leoti, Montezuma, Newton and Wichita to share 87 articles.

Among the items appraised at the latest exhibition were a 1967 Seeburg jukebox, a Native American stone axe, various carnival glassware, pitchers, cookie jars, vases, salt and pepper shakers, teapots , cups, pots, plates, a butter churn, banks, clocks, engravings, paintings, advertising prints and lithographs, as well as a violin, stereooptic, pins, brooches, boxes jewelry and books.


Appraisals are $15 per article and spectators are free to enter. Those who pre-register with payment by March 4 can bring three items for $36. Organizers encourage early registration, which is open at the Finney County Historical Museum, 403 S. Fourth St. Exhibit hours are 1 to 5 p.m., seven days a week.

Advance registration will continue at the museum after March 4, but without the discount; and walk-in registration will be available until 2 p.m. on the day of the fair.

Doors to the 4-H building will open to the public at 8:30 a.m. on the day of the event, with the fair continuing until 4 p.m. or the final judging, whichever comes first. Those who register must provide printed photos of their memories. Museum staff can photograph items upon pre-registration for those who prefer.

Evaluations will be done individually, in order of registration, so that spectators can come and go or stay all day. No artifacts will be bought or sold, but appraisers will offer non-binding verbal estimates of the value of each, while sharing their knowledge of the objects. Almost any antique, vintage, or collectible item can be appraised except coins, fine jewelry, or firearms. Also, only general estimates can be offered on comics and trading cards.

Food and beverages will be sold by Flat Broke Barbecue. The Appraisal Fair conducts support programs, research, artifact preservation, and museum exhibits.

Attendees are advised to exercise their own judgment on viral immunity. No face coverings or proof of vaccination will be required, but masks and hand sanitizer will be available at no cost for those who wish to use them.

The gathering is possible thanks to the strong support of sponsors. Major sponsors are American Warrior, Inc., the Finney County Convention and Visitors Bureau, The Garden City Telegram, the Vernon and Wilma Solze family, Rhonda Stone and Larry Johnston Auction. Major sponsors are Commerce Bank, Fry Eye Associates, Golden Plains Credit Union, Homestead Assisted Living, Oswalt Appraisals, United Rentals and Valley State Bank.

Additional sponsors range from John and Angelica Chappel, Rick and Rosemary Corbett, Farmers Insurance – The Abel Loza Agency and Dave Tabor Construction to Garnand Funeral Home and Unger’s Heating and Air Conditioning. Edward Jones financial adviser Preston Johnson is sponsoring awards for the most unique, valuable and oldest man-made object, and there will also be a first-time People’s Choice award. .

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