Almost 70 years ago, staff members and volunteers at the Waverly Community House had an idea that became one of the area's premier fall events. This weekend, however, the annual Waverly Community House Antiques Show and Sale is set to open its doors for the final time.
"It has been a great run," said Maria Wilson, executive director of the Waverly Community House. "What is best about this show will probably be rolled into our House, Garden and Gift Show in the spring. We're always looking for ways to improve our programs here. It was just time to stop after 70 years and we're taking our programming in a different direction. We're moving forward; it has been an incredible run."
The Last Waverly Antiques Show and Sale will take place on Saturday, Sept. 15, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sunday, Sept. 16, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Waverly Community House, 1115 N. Abington Road. Tickets for the event are $6 per person.
This year's event is sponsored by Marworth and, besides a variety of antiques for sale by regional vendors, the show will also include a luncheon by the Chef's Table at Keystone College and an optional walking tour of historic Waverly on Saturday, Sept. 15, beginning at 2:30 p.m.
Janet Taylor, who chaired the show in 1979 and who has been a show vendor since the 1980s, explained how changing lifestyles have affected people's knowledge of antiques.
"This show is like all shows, they change with time and with what is going on in the world," she said. "Now shows are different, years ago they used to have a lot of furniture and a lot of older things and people knew and understood them. Now, you're getting into the collectibles. A lot of the younger people don't know the antiques as their parents knew them.We've lost that curve of knowledge. When they go out, they do not know what they are looking for. They are too busy, they have two jobs."
With an event like the Antiques Show and Sale, however, Taylor believes that people could learn more about antiques by creating a dialogue with the vendors present.
"Ask your dealers what something is," she said. "Any dealer will get you a history and if they don't know, they will try to find out for you. If this is your first time at a show, ask your dealer about the pieces and where they are from. They enjoy telling you the stories behind the pieces."
Dealer chair Nora Fox echoed Taylor's sentiments.
"The younger generations don't seem to have an appreciation for handmade items because, just like everything else, they've been reproduced," she said. "Companies like the Pottery Barn and Crate and Barrel are making so-called antiques that are bigger in scale because everything is super-sized now."
"There are so many facets to the wares that are being presented in this show," she continued. "It isn't just about decorative antiques, there is glassware and jewelry, from costume to fine jewelry. You might pick up something and think it is pretty but when you learn about it, you might be more apt to want to purchase it."
A show preview party, featuring hors d'oeuvres, live music, cocktails and early purchasing options, will take place on Friday, Sept. 14, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 per person and are available at the Waverly Comminity House or at the door.
"The show is going to go out with respect and class, as a thank you to our vendors," said co-chair Lisa Wahl. "We also want our vendors to have the chance to say good-bye to everyone. We want to give it a great send-off."
For more information or to purchase tickets, contact the Waverly Community House at 586-8191, ext. 5 or visit www.waverlycomm.org.