Because it’s nestled near Michigan’s southwest corner, the Allegan Antiques Market draws large crowds from Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and other surrounding areas. This includes vendors as well as visitors. In fact, an average of 400 unique vendors set up shop at every show, so you can rest assured that there will be plenty to see on any given weekend.
2. Vast Selection & Variety
When you encounter hundreds of antique dealers, you’re pretty much guaranteed access to a great selection of products. Whether you’re looking for Vintage Fiestaware or adding to your postcard collection, the Allegan Antiques Market is the place to start your search. Case in point: my husband had shopped for months to find a classic, well-made razor. After about 15 minutes of wandering around the Allegan Antiques Market, he found a bucket full of prospects and took home exactly what he was looking for. A little hunting required, but nothing major–and totally worth the time.3. Great Venue
Sunshine or rain, it doesn’t matter–the Allegan Antiques Market is set up with several large buildings and covered shelters for both indoor and outdoor shopping. Duck inside for a break from the heat, or take in a beautiful day as you walk along one of many paved paths. There are also some great shade trees and places to sit along the way, but you’ll still want to remember your walking shoes (refer to item 1 above).
4. Save Some Money
This may go without saying, but used merchandise is usually a lot less expensive than anything that’s brand-new. Of course, there will always be exceptions–I’m sure Ben Franklin’s dining room set could fetch a few bucks–but overall, you can find some great deals at the Allegan Antiques Market. Don’t like the ticket price? You can always haggle. Every vendor, whether they’ll admit it or not, usually prices items high enough for a little wiggle room. Simply offer a few dollars lower . . . worst case scenario, the seller will stick to the ticket price. After all, you’ll never know if you don’t ask.5. Find Something Unique
Sure, I love Ikea as much as the next person, but so do all of my friends. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that when you shop at a popular retailer, your purchases are also likely to be popular (I know at least four people who own this coffee table, and I’m one of them). Stand out from the crowd and customize your home with one-of-a-kind items, or at least an uncommon mix of items from various decades.
6. Brush Up On Your History
Many of the antique dealers at the Allegan Antiques Market aren’t just experts at exchanging cash–they’re also knowledgeable history buffs! When I purchased a 1970s Burwood Products mirror, I noticed a label on the front that said the item was made in Traverse City. I asked the seller about it, and she explained that Michigan-based Burwood made special wood/plastic composite items during much of the 20th century. I was originally drawn to the mirror because of its charming design, but now I’m even more excited to know that I’m adding a piece of Michigan history to my home.
7. Food Galore
Missed lunch because you were too busy shopping? Never fear–the Allegan Antiques Market has you covered with sandwiches, ice cream, carnival-style food, and that frozen lemonade that everyone flocks to on hot, summer days. There’s plenty to eat, so no need to leave for a long, drawn-out meal. Just grab a snack and you’ll be back to scouting out those bargains in no time.8. Downtown Shopping
If you find that your superhero powers have successfully led you through every single booth in record time, don’t worry . . . that ain’t all she wrote. Downtown Allegan is filled with several antique stores for you to browse on your way out, so stop by the local shops and help support a Michigan business or two!
Will you be visiting the Allegan Antiques Market this year? Make sure to share your favorite new-to-you finds in the comments below!