published Friday, February 25th, 2011

Houston Antiques Show opens today

The Houston Museum of Decorative Arts is kicking off its golden anniversary with a rare opportunity at its annual Antiques Show and Sale.

For the first time, showgoers will be able to purchase some of the actual ceramic pieces accumulated by the late Anna Safley Houston, founder of the museum. A limited number of pieces that have been in storage will be made available at the show for guests wishing to collect a piece of Chattanooga history.

When the 37th Houston Museum Antiques Show and Sale opens this morning, it returns to Grand Central Station at the rear of the Chattanooga Choo Choo grounds. This is a change of venue from last year's Warehouse Row event.

"We'll again have all the dealers in one room, which we found our guests like, and parking is more user-friendly at the Choo Choo complex," said Amy Frierson, Houston executive director.

Frierson said 22 dealers will be exhibiting in this weekend's antiques show, which is the museum's largest fundraiser. She said Donna Garrett Kidd of Mount Pleasant, S.C., is returning as show manager. Kidd is known for antiques shows she stages in Charleston, S.C.

Frierson said in addition to five new dealers, there will be several crowd favorites among returning exhibitors.

"Lynda Weaver of Collectanea in Memphis and Jo Ann Hathcock of Germantown, Tenn., will be here with jewelry. Sue Robinette of Monticello, Ky., has a large following for her silver and antiques. Angel Wing Antiques has vintage costume jewelry, which fascinates people," said Frierson.

"Somebody returning to our show after several years is Virginia Jared of Hillsboro Antiques. She has very appealing accessories, paintings and tableware," added the director.

All proceeds from the show will benefit the programs of the nonprofit museum.

IF YOU GO

* What: Houston Museum Antiques Show and Sale.

* When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. today and Saturday, noon-4 p.m. Sunday.

* Where: Grand Central Station of Chattanooga Choo Choo, 1400 Market St.

* Admission: $15 (good all three days).

* Phone: 267-7176.

APPRAISAL FAIR

From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, appraisers will assess the value of items brought in by ticketholders, with the exception of jewelry. "To have an item appraised, guests must purchase a show ticket, then there is a $5 per item fee, with no limit to the number of items that may be appraised," said Houston Executive Director Amy Frierson.

WHAT'S NEXT

The Houston Museum Antiques Show and Sale is the first event this year in the museum's 50th anniversary celebration. On March 5, the day the museum opened 50 years ago, an open house will be held at the museum, 201 High St.

about Susan Pierce...

Susan Palmer Pierce is a reporter and columnist in the Life department. She began her journalism career as a summer employee 1972 for the News Free Press, typing bridal announcements and photo captions. She became a full-time employee in 1980, working her way up to feature writer, then special sections editor, then Lifestyle editor in 1995 until the merge of the NFP and Times in 1999. She was honored with the 2007 Chattanooga Woman of ...

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