It’s the perfect time for a trip to Cambridge City!Antique Alley; more than 1,200 antique dealers operate businesses along the Historic National Road from Richmond to Knightstown. Historic Cambridge City (just 16 miles west of Richmond) is the hub of Antique Alley with 11 antique shops and mall within a 3 block area.
If you’re the kind of shopper that likes to park once and walk from store to store – all within a few blocks of one another – Cambridge City is the place to go.
“There’s just all kinds of shops," says Norma Bertsch, owner of Building 125. “There’s something for everyone.”
Like primitive barn finds? No problem. Repurposed items? Fine antiques? Collectibles? Curiosities? Whatever your taste or price range, you’re bound to come across something tempting.
That will be especially true on Saturday, Oct.13, when some 50 more vendors will line downtown for the town’s annual Fall Antique Fair from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Goods from local stores also will spill onto the sidewalks.
It’s a shopping extravaganza, not only for antiques, but also for crafts, fall décor, and more.
But don’t worry. If you prefer your shopping on the quieter side, just pick another weekend. Some of the antique stores close during the week, but all are open Thursday through Saturday.
Stop by the Cambridge City Public Library at 600 W. Main, where you can pick up written directions to many of the sights around Cambridge City. The library is worth a visit, both to see the building itself – a remodeled automobile dealership – and to explore the Overbeck Pottery Museum.
The four Overbeck sisters created art pottery in the early decades of the 20th century. Their arts and crafts vases are featured in museums all over the world and have turned up on Antiques Roadshow. Locally, the Overbecks are perhaps best known for their “grotesque” figurines of people and animals.
If your explorations have piqued an interest in Cambridge City and you happen to be in town on a Tuesday or Thursday afternoon between 2:00 and 4:00, take a peek in the library’s history room, where you’ll meet a group of women who can answer any questions and just might help you trace any ancestors in the area.
One of the “history ladies,” Patty Hersberger, told me two U.S. presidents – Martin Van Buren in 1841 and Millard Fillmore a few years later – got stuck in the mud near town while travelling west on the National Road. Facts like that are as much fun to collect as antiques!
The antique fair is just one reason for a fall visit to Cambridge City.
Scary Hollows Haunted Trail at 3065 W. 1000 N. in nearby Milton offers frights in the woods, hayrides, and a corn maze every Friday and Saturday in October. Hours are 7-11 p.m.
No sooner is Halloween over than preparations begin for Christmas, with a holiday-themed open house from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Building 125, Vinton House Antiques, and Log House Antiques. Or explore the vintage Christmas shop in the basement of Allen’s Antiquities and Curiosities.
Find details about the shops and sights listed here at their Facebook pages and learn even more about the area at VisitRichmond.org.
By Louise Ronald