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August 20, 2013 > Antique Fair offers treasures from years gone by

Antique Fair offers treasures from years gone by

By Sara Giusti

Antique lovers, unite! It's that time of year again to celebrate antiques, history, and community at the annual "Niles Antique Faire and Flea Market," now in its 49th year.

Whether searching for vintage clothes, collectibles, or gifts, the "Niles Antique Faire and Flea Market" will have something for everyone. Shoppers will be greeted by more than 200 vendors, including 60 new vendors, and more than 100 garage sales that sprout in the neighborhood during the weekend. Vendors will offer antiques, collectibles, jewelry, art, ceramics, and many one-of-a-kind items. For foodies, Thai kabob, Mexican food, hot dogs, snow cones, and Main Street's many restaurants will be open to serve 40,000 expected guests this year. As for movie buffs, Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum is a must see and will be open from noon to 4 p.m.

The Faire is organized by the Niles Main Street Association, a nonprofit organization run by volunteers who work to preserve the history and revitalize the economy of Niles. The event supports the community and what a perfect way to do so: Niles is known for its antique shop- filled downtown, and the Faire is a special display of the best Niles has to offer.

Thousands of antique collectors and appreciators flock to the Faire every year searching for treasures. Indeed, the appeal of antiques lies in their rich history, similar to the attraction of Niles' own unique history; it's no secret that Charlie Chaplin and Broncho Billy Anderson filmed some of their most famous silent films in Niles, or that the district is home to an unusual interactive, living museum - the Niles Canyon Railway. People come to the Faire not only to relive history, and trade and buy antiques, but to meet friends and discover other antique businesses; vendors come from all over the Bay Area. While many vendors are business owners, the Faire also attracts people cleaning out their own collection of vintage items and collectibles.

As in prior years, Boy Scout Troop 20 will be parking cars on Nursery Avenue for $5, and Boy Scout Troop 132 will be parking cars coming from Niles Canyon for $8. All parking fees go directly to each troop. When these lots fill, cars will be directed to other parking. For those eager to get a good parking spot, visit Knights of the Sausage's popular pancake breakfast at 5 a.m.

According to Faire Coordinator Keith Elrod, the best thing about the Faire is the excitement when vendors and visitors arrive. "People come back year after year and enjoy it so much," he said. "I look forward to everyone coming and enjoying the day." Elrod also said that the Faire has two exciting sponsors this year: Dale Hardware and Whole Foods. As for next year's half-century anniversary, "Watch out for the 50th next year - we are going big," Elrod said.

Niles Antique Faire and Flea Market
Sunday, Aug 25
6 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Historic Niles District
Niles Blvd., Fremont
(510) 742-9868
Free admission (fee for parking)

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