Saturday was our big day to visit Antiques Roadshow. Sue (MIL) & I left at 9 a.m. and headed north. Way north. For 2 1/2 hrs. About 11:30 we arrived (for our 1:00 ticket time) and found a good place to park in the first section near the building.
The sign inside said they were admitting those with ticket times up through 12:00. I had already seen the large ARS banner so said I’d take her picture there. We didn’t want to unpack the treasures for the picture so we held our tickets.
Just as we finished pictures, a volunteer said they were now admitting those with 1:00 tickets so we hurried to the door.
We entered a HUGE room with chairs & ARS blue tape marking off the cue lines. We headed near the front (and were thankful we didn’t have to snake through this whole room) and were put in a row for 1:00 ticket holders.
Meanwhile, 12:00 ticket holders continued to the current line of zig-zagging through the rows. We were pleased as punch to be about #6 & 7 in the 1:00 group. 🙂
We were given a 15 min warning that we’d be moving soon. Sure enough at 12:30, we were taken about 3 rows up and joined with the rest of the line filing back & forth, inching towards the front.
As we had stood there, I had thought that our goal at this point was not just the front of this room but access to the next room over.
As we got within 2 rows of the front, we saw 6 tables with Antique Roadshow workers.
(blurry because I did this without a flash)
We concluded this is the preliminary review area. Once we got that far (about 1:35), we were given tickets for each category of items we had. Each ticket holder could have 2 items appraised. Sue’s categories were Tribal Art and Dolls. I had Clocks & Watches and Toys & Games.
As we entered the next room, she said, “I think this is where we part ways.” And we did as each of us had a volunteer show us to our first area.
I was taken to Clocks first as I had a collection of 6 family pocketwatches. I had been warned that because I had a collection and not just 1 pocketwatch, that the appraiser could just make me choose 1 to appraise. We had already had that discussion so were fine with the rule.
The first set of lines in this room was in your category. It was outside of a large circle in the center of the room created by blue curtains. There were openings in the circle every so often. The lines then radiated away from the circle.
The Clock line wasn’t too bad compared to the line next to me. I guessed maybe I was #5 here. A few at a time were taken to inside the curtained circle.
Soon it was my turn as they separated watches from clocks at this time. Three of us ticket holders had our tickets punched and were taken to a short line in front of a table. The table was for the appraisal and the appraisers had their backs to the curtain.
So all around the outer edge of this inner circle were tables of appraisers. Our booklet said 20 categories. My 1 category of Clocks & Watches had 4 appraisers working. We were told to expect each appraisal to take 2 minutes.
I would say that when it was my turn, he went over my 6 pocketwatches in 2 minutes total. I hurriedly took notes on each one, listened, and tried to make eye contact and keep him going. The pocketwatches are all “working” people watches. After the 3rd mention, I said that we (Bob’s family & Sue’s family) are farm families so that would make perfect sense. They were all gold-plated and some dated to the 1800’s. He had names for the makers and 3 of them were ladies watches. Repeating that they were only gold-plated, he said that “as a collection, today they would bring about $100.”
I thanked him and worked my way back out of the curtained circle.
At this point I asked where the Toys & Games category was and was directed to the far side of the circle. Once again on the outer side of the curtains, I worked my way past a lot of people in lines with their goods. On my way, I found Sue waiting in her Doll line. It was next to my Toy line but my line was very, very long and she was near the front of her line.
I waited. I conversed with those around me. I sat on the cement floor. I took bites from my protein bar and kept it hidden. I turned my phone back on. I texted Phil. I texted K. I was bored.
And then the line moved a bit. And a while later, we moved again. Soon I could see Sue! I had caught up to her! All this while we thought our line was moving slowly, her line wasn’t even moving! Argh!! She was getting cranky.
Soon they called for anyone with a Toy ticket. I was #6 in this train of people being taken to the inner circle. However, the ticket puncher turned his back before punching the tickets of me and the man in front of me. I continued following.
While in this shorter line we were constantly told to stay off this bit of carpeted area that was so near our positions. It was a “set”. So I looked around and saw they had 2 TV taping sets in the center of this inner curtained circle. There was no filming going on at this point. But I could look around and see I was near a small item set and across the area was a set for taping larger items.
A volunteer came by and asked if I had my ticket. Yes. Was it punched? NO! 😦 They just took us in and didn’t punch my ticket. As she was ready to take me back out of this prized area, an ARS worker (complete with denim shirt, headset, and clipboard) pointed to the metal bank I cradled in my hands and said, “I want to see that appraised.”
The volunteer said, “You’re lucky, I was just ready to send you out.” 😦
And just like that, the line was opened and it was MY TURN at the table once again! The ARS worker was there and repeated he wanted to know along with me. The appraiser gave background on the bank I had placed on the table. Dates, name, the figure was of the evil mayor, this one is an orgininal, not cast from others. However, the hand of the mayor was broken at the wrist. Obviously. And that matter knocked the value. To the basement.
“Today this would bring about $100.” (nearly the exact same words that I heard from the watch guy.)
But I was so close to being wanted!! 😉
I found my way out of the inner circle near where Sue was STILL waiting in line. However, while inside I was near the Doll table and I saw they were back to working. (We heard they took a 2 hour lunch break and they did some filming so we aren’t sure if it was a little of both or what that stopped her line.)
She wanted to give up & go home but I said she was so close! I wandered and let her continue in line.
I “won” a travel mug (not insulated) from Liberty Mutual a sponsor of ARS. Lame. I wanted a Tshirt. :p
I picked up the business cards of my 2 appraisers for Sue to have. Then I sat. I was at the end of the Liberty Mutual table. I chatted with a lady also resting who then ended up whining her way to a Tshirt from a LM volunteer who was carrying some shirts. hmpf!
After this lady & her husband left, this LM volunteer again walked by with shirts flung over his shoulder. I glanced at him and just put my hand out for a handout silently.
He agreed… I saw him give one to the other lady, I should have one too. 🙂
About 15 mins later, Sue arrived. She had finished! She wanted a shirt too but only got a travel mug. I said I got a shirt! 🙂
We headed out to the car. As we put our things in the backseat, I showed her the shirt and she was thrilled with it and glad to have it. 🙂
It was 4:08. Time to head home!
Traffic wasn’t bad at all and soon we were on smaller roads heading south again. Home just after 6 p.m.
A long day of standing in lines and we didn’t get on TV, but she had fun and we learned a lot!
ETA: Sorry, I forgot to tell you about Sue’s items. Her Tribal Arts item was a pottery bowl made by some Native American tribe. (I’m working to be PC here!) The appraiser told her the tribe (or the likely tribes) that did this work. They were a poorer tribe and made these pots for the tourists. It is about 8″ in diameter or so. I think the value was around $250.
Next was an old doll. (The reason she stood in the doll category line for 2 hours.) She was quite disappointed with the appraiser here. For one thing, she noticed he had to look up every item in the Dolls Collectible book. Then he told her the doll was a reproduction. 😦 She is pretty sure it is real for several reasons so that was sad to her. So no value there.
Meanwhile… the ARS tshirt… PRICELESS! 😉
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