The forty-fifth annual Antiques and Uniques Festival on Craftsbury Common will be held on Saturday, July 11, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The event is free of charge and open to all. The $5 parking donation goes to the Craftsbury Fire Department. This tented event is rain or shine with seating for seniors and games for children.
Festival goers of all ages come to enjoy shopping for antiques and Vermont crafts, sampling local and artisan food and drink, and picnicing outside of the barbecue tent — all of this to a live folk and fiddle musical backdrop.
With over 100 antiques dealers, Vermont craft vendors, and local specialty foods vendors, the crowd of shoppers easily draws thousands. And the demand for the local foods barbecue is something to be impressed by. With 95 percent of its food coming from within a 15-mile radius of Craftsbury, the barbecue tent is a splendiferous feast. Local grass-fed beef from Sawmill Brook Farm, organic sausages from LeBlanc Family Farm, Vermont Smoke and Cure hot dogs, Pete’s Greens’ organic greens, fresh eggs from Still Meadow Farm, and healthy vegan hummus wraps made by the Craftsbury General Store are just some of the foods available. The Cellars at Jasper Hill has been generous with the festival both in donated money and with donated product. The festival gladly tops their burgers and vegetable wraps with their world award-winning cheese.
The Antiques and Uniques Festival has been held the second Saturday in July every year since 1971 on Craftsbury Common.
The town of Craftsbury decided that it’s going to take a village to continue the festival tradition and therefore the entire village should benefit from it. Here’s how it works: Individuals who wish to volunteer for Antiques and Uniques keep track of the work hours they accumulate and choose a Craftsbury nonprofit or organization that they wish to represent. At the end of the event, all proceeds are distributed to the various organizations. This means that the entire town benefits from the festival because of the generosity of the volunteering patrons.
In a society where it’s so easy to throw things away and replace with the newer, faster and better, concepts like appreciating the “old” or “outdated” can seem ridiculous — but not when one slows down enough to explore the rare beauty and individuality of true craftsmanship. When one walks the green of Craftsbury Common and examines the vendors’ antiques and the crafters’ one-of-a-kind pieces, a feeling of awe arises.
For more things to do, see Things to Do in the Northeast Kingdom.