One of the wonderful and overlooked aspects of the western New York area is the abundance of weekend markets and one off special community events. Along with the major attractions like the Farmers Market on Bidwell, or those that occupy a traditional place like the markets in East Aurora, Williamsville and North Tonawanda, there are these other markets, equally interesting and enjoyable. These other markets are flea markets, antique markets and large antique shows that can be a weekly adventure, but a way to keep good things out of landfills, and fill your life soulful accessories.
Over the coming weeks, we hope to share not only some of the markets and where to find them, but also introduce you to the colorful characters that spend their days in attics, basements, barns, and tag sales all over upstate New York digging for treasures to bring back into circulation. Doing just that for the past 29 years, I can share that it is not as glamorous as seen on American Pickers, but does offer some of the same thrills when we get a chance to uncover, or in some cases excavate a rare or historical object.
Buffalo is an amazing place to find antiques, as at its peak, the things being manufactured and purchased locally were significant because of the designers who created them, but also the volume of which people held on to them. Everything from Frank Lloyd Wright and Roycroft furniture, metal work, and windows, to Charles and Ray Eames designs, not to mention the multitude of art pottery, industrial designs, stained glass, and architectural antiques that are out there. Whether your interest is in vinyl, mid-century modern, vintage clothing, photographs, fine art, or just looking for something amazing to put in your garden, the 716 markets have it.
Any given Saturday or Sunday morning, there are places to find a similar adrenaline rush by coming across that nostalgic piece that has been missing since childhood, or that object of desire that you now have the perfect place for. Every trip is an adventure, a treasure hunt for unknown treasure, and a place to also get produce, flowers, kettle corn and occasionally, an education about Buffalo, only gleaned through selling its dusty history.
Lead image: The Peddler Flea Market on Elmwood Avenue – Saturdays, corner of West Ferry