Lights out didn’t deter shopping at Hudson

Winter weather in the Midwest is known to be unpredictable, so dealers at the Jan. 14-15 antiques show at the Holiday Inn in Hudson, Ohio, weren’t too concerned when the power went out a few hours before the opening on the first day of this weekend show.

Usually, power outages last less than an hour, but this one fooled everyone and went all morning long, lasting through the first three hours of the show. The Holiday Inn turned on its auxiliary generators, providing partial lighting for the show, and dealers dug out candles to light their booths, bringing true antiques ambiance. One dealer, who probably had the darkest booth in the show, joked about offering “midnight sale” prices.

It didn’t matter — customers weren’t scared off by the inclement weather and crowded into the show. The turnout was good despite the ice storm, and promoter Lynne Dingus was pleased with her opening morning gate. It was strong enough that booths were crowded, even in the dark, as buyers from several nearby states swarmed through the show.

When the lights finally came back on, customers retraced their steps through booths, looking for antiques that previously were difficult to see. Several dealers reported a sudden increase in sales right after the lights returned.

Quality period antiques sold better than middle-range antiques. Throughout the two-day show, several dealers sold late 18th- and early 19th-century furniture, including a large chair table, a set of six early chairs, a pair of bannister-back New England chairs along with a single, slightly different chair, all three to the same customer. Also seen going to new homes were sewing tools, lighting, several 19th-century wall shelves, an advertising sign, a huge rooster weather vane, a hanging cupboard in old paint, a crock bench, a coverlet, early children’s items, stone fruit, several pieces of 19th-century Early American pressed glass, and a chalkware lion, just to name a few items.

Although the show slowed down late Saturday afternoon, it picked up again on Sunday. Some customers came back for furniture they’d seen the day before and wanted to think over. Others had waited out the ice storm and came to the show for the first time on Sunday, the better of the two days weatherwise. Several dealers reported Sunday sales, for which the Hudson show is known. At so many shows, the second day of a show is quiet, but not at Hudson — several dealers reported sales as strong on the second day as on the first.

With 53 dealers from Maine, Vermont, Pennsylvania, Michigan, New York, Indiana, Connecticut, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Ohio, Virginia, Rhode Island, Missouri and Minnesota, there was a huge amount of variety.

Dingus works hard to bring in top-quality dealers with good merchandise. Hudson is recognized as one of the best regional shows in country antiques, but this year’s mix of dealers truly offered something for everyone.

For more information on the Hudson show, contact Dingus at (606) 561-9889.

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