Saturday, September 18, 2010

Field Trip: Hartville Marketplace and Flea Market

My husband hated flea markets with a passion.  And to tell the truth, I am not a big fan myself.  We both used to get drug around one by friends who believed there was a some nugget of treasure buried in each table.  I remind myself why I don't care for them about every 5 years.  Today was the day; I visited the Hartville Marketplace and Flea Market.

I hadn't been in probably longer than five years, because I am pretty sure this was the first time I had been to the new location, which is across the street from the old location, and monsterously larger.  I parked on the north side of the sprawling building, and went through the inside which contains a dizzying array of booths featuring all kinds of things ranging from watches, clothing, an Apple Vacation rep, some food booths, and a lot of Amish food - jams, cheeses, etc.

Then I headed outside to one of the two covered pavillions and was pleasantly surprised to see the variety of fresh produce for sale.   It's really starting to look like fall with the apples, pumpkins, and squash coming in full force.

Outside pavillion
Fall Apples

Fall Squashes
This display of peppers was particularly pretty:

Display of Peppers
I guess these are hot....
I scored some brussels sprouts and portobello mushrooms.

Big Portobellos
Brussels Sprouts

I also got a beautiful giangantic mum basket with a lime green (of course!) sweet potato vine, and two pumpkins for the porch, one with some wonderful warts for a total of $17

I wandered through the outside stalls and other than a few old blue canning jars with zinc lids (first photo), nothing really qualified as a treasure that needed to come home with me. 

Flea markets are where old Tupperware and Beanie Babies go to die.  Flea markets are where you can find just about any size tarp or bungee cord ever made, or buy the largest package of tube socks you've ever seen.

Ever wondered where the detritus you dropped at the curb that went missing when you went back for a second load went?  It went to the flea market.  (I even had curb shoppers go through my garbage bags once looking for 'treasure' and I gave the gleaners stuff I was getting rid of when I saw them combing the neighborhood on trash day).

There is a combination of aromas you won't find anywhere else.  I was alternately greeted with a whiff of eau de grandma's musty basement, followed by Kettle Korn, followed by about every other person smoking a cigarette. 

I arrived fairly early, probably around 9:30 or so, and it wasn't too crowded, but there was a big line of cars, busses, and motorhomes headed in when I left.

I know the saying is 'one man's trash is another man's treasure', but I couldn't help thinking "Holy Craptastic-ness" for the most part.  I'm good for another five years or so.

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