History comes to life in a new way this weekend at the Columbus Chapel & Boal Mansion Museum in Boalsburg. The museum hosts its annual Antique Faire & Sale Friday-Monday, timed to coincide with the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts and People’s Choice Festival, giving visitors the chance to get their hands on some unique pieces of history.
“Now in its fifth year, the Antique Faire offers guests an opportunity to journey back in time via a wide selection of heirlooms offered by numerous quality vendors,” said museum director Robert Cameron. During the fair, guests can also tour the museum, which alone features more than 300 works of art dating from the Renaissance.
Vendors come from across the entire state to hawk their wares, all vetted to ensure they’re offering high-quality items, both the expected and the unusual, with selections suitable for both casual shoppers and collectors.
“You never know what will be offered by the vendors,” Cameron said. “In years past, items have ranged from a 19th-century doctor’s buggy to a historic sculpture of a bronze mermaid. Not knowing what may be found in the next vendor’s booth is what makes an antique faire so exciting.”
He and his team hopes the event will eventually become one of the marquis antique fairs in the Northeast, as the event continues to take up more and more of the museum’s extensive 48-acre grounds.
In addition to shopping for antiques, attendees can also bring antiques for appraisal. Roger Snyder of Apple Hill Antiques will be on-site during the fair to conduct appraisals. Guests can bring up to two items and appraisals are $5 per item, with proceeds supporting the museum.
The antiques aren’t the only attraction drawing attendees to the Antique Faire, though.
“Each year I find unusual items to purchase,” Cameron said. “But in addition to the wide range of antiques and collectibles, there’s also great food including ‘homemade’ blueberry milkshakes made with Meyer’s Dairy ice cream and berries picked from the museum’s grounds. Also, every year there is the very popular pie contest.”
Anyone is welcome to enter the pie contest, with the only requirement being the baker uses at least 50 percent of some type or combination of berries in their ingredients. Prizes are awarded to first-, second- and third-place winners. Pies must be turned in at the fair by 11 a.m. Saturday and judging occurs at noon. For those more interested in eating pie than baking it, slices of each pie are available for purchase.
The Antique Faire & Sale takes place 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Friday-Sunday, with vendors offering new wares every day of the fair. There is no entrance fee to the event, but parking is $5. The Columbus Chapel & Boal Mansion Museum is located across the street from the Pennsylvania Military Museum, where the People’s Choice Festival takes place the same dates.