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Spring weather brings crowd to antique show

The first warm, sunny weekend after a long, cold winter meant a record crowd at the Oregon Woman's Club's 64th annual Antique Show.

"We had a wonderful turnout — around 1,970 people," said club president Judy Groharing. "I think people were glad to get out after a hard winter. We even had people still coming after we closed on Sunday."

Sunshine prevailed both days of the event and Saturday's temperatures in the low 50s turned into 60s on Sunday.

The parking areas at and near the Blackhawk Center, Oregon, were already filled with vehicles at 10 a.m. Saturday, just an hour after the show opened its doors.

Inside the vendor booths were busy with both buyers and "lookers."

Joe DeWulf from Deer Run Antiques, Waunakee, Wis., a veteran exhibitor at the show, said business was brisk.

"It's been good. We've had a lot of interest," he said as he found an item for a customer from a large antique trunk.

Across the auditorium, Stanley Campbell, Rockford, was looking for political items in the array displayed by Darryl Giambalvo, Wheaton.

"I come almost every year," Campbell said.

The show is also a do-not-miss event for Larry and Hazel Ford, Sycamore.

"We come every year. We mostly just look," said Hazel as she examined a large crock.

Groharing said the crowd seemed pleased at the wide array of merchandise offered by vendors.

"We have such a wide variety of categories, there is something for all interests, and visitors commented a lot on that," she said.  "I saw a lot of all kinds of items go out, and the dealers were very happy.  We have many who return and their customers come looking for them."

The five dealers new to the show this year seemed pleased, Groharing said, and will likely return.

The Chana United Methodist Church provided the food for the event for the first time this year.

Ron Bry, Oregon, is the show's manager.

The Oregon Woman’s Club, a member of the General Federation of Woman’s Clubs and a non-profit organization, sponsors the show as its major fund-raising event and uses the proceeds to help fund various community projects and charities.

The club sponsors two scholarships for graduating seniors, donates funds and food to the local food pantry, helps the VFW with holiday food baskets, and sends a student to leadership camp each summer.

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