News and notes from Fredericksburg's entertainment scene
Find out if your relics are treasures during ‘Cash in the Attic’
BY JESSE SCOTT
FOR THE FREE LANCE–STAR
The shiny lamp in your garage is calling.
The mysterious, dusty art in your attic is whispering your name.
And so are all of the other valuable-looking knickknacks scattered throughout the nooks and crannies of your residence.
This weekend you can finally find out if your hidden treasures are truly treasure during the Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center’s “Cash in the Attic Weekend.”
The weekend puts your cherished items in the spotlight and will feature a handful of world-renowned appraisers all in one spot, ready to appraise your personal objects, antiques and family keepsakes.
“At some of these events, we’ve come across some pretty wacky stuff and some pretty valuable stuff,” said Tim Luke, a featured appraiser on HGTV’s “Cash in the Attic” and participant on PBS’ “Antiques Roadshow.” “We’ve come across an Italian violin worth about $40,000 and a piece of Newcomb pottery worth about $20,000,” he said.
“Cash in the Attic” weekend kicks off on Friday at the University of Mary Washington’s Jepson Alumni Center with the FAMCC’s 15th annual Silent Auction and Gala. Attendees can bid on a slew of extravagant gifts and trips, including the opportunity to have Luke come to their home for a custom appraisal of their items.
On Saturday, Luke will join his partner, Greg Strahm from TreasureQuest Appraisal Group in Florida, and local appraisers Arch Di Peppe and Bill Beck in Fredericksburg’s Market Square. The appraisers will inspect items for $20 each or three for $50. In addition to giving an approximate value, the appraisers will provide background information for each item.
Proceeds from the events will support the FAMCC.
In preparation for Saturday’s open appraisal session, the appraisers have a few simple tips.
“One of the most important things to be at these events is patient,” said Luke. “We’re here to help people understand what value means. Some people will come in with the highest expectations and have a sense of elevated value. The best way to see us is with little expectations and to have as much fun as possible. It really is an educational process.”
“It’s worth the time to check it out,” added Di Peppe, an independent appraiser with more than 30 years of experience. “Everyone must understand, though, that antiques are subject to the exact same market forces that houses and stock markets are. An item worth $1,000 five years ago may not hold the same value today.”
The appraisers have seen the gamut of items over the years. One time Luke had a customer who was hit in the face by a marble and was convinced it was valuable.
“The marble literally hit her in the face,” he said, laughing. “She was so convinced it was worth something.”
In a town chock-full of historical items, what better way to settle your appraisal questions and spend a (hopefully) sunny Saturday?
“Fredericksburg is a perfect town to do an event like this,” said Di Peppe.” We’re in a state that loves its history, and we have a long line of people over our history who cherished their things and passed them on. We could talk for hours about all of the valuable things in Fredericksburg.”
CASH IN THE ATTIC WEEKEND
What: Silent auction and gala
When and where: 6 p.m. Friday, April 27, UMW Jepson Alumni Center. Cocktails at 6 p.m., followed by dinner at 7 p.m., and auction at 8 p.m.
Cost: $100/person or $175/couple
What: Appraisals with Tim Luke
When and where: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 28, at Market Square, downtown Fredericksburg
Cost: $20 per item appraised or three items appraised for $50. Reservations are not required.
Info: 540/371-3037; famcc.org
Jesse Scott is a freelance writer and Fredericksburg native. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.