How many of you have heard of the Renninger’s “Extravaganza” (and Mini- Toy Show inside)? Many around Pennsylvania have, as it is a legendary marketplace for Antiques. Dealers have for sure, as it is a pilgrimage. -But the public? Yes, for some, many, no.
Renninger’s actually has two locations. One is in Pennsylvania, not far from Morphy’s Auction House around Denver, PA and then Florida has one. Yes, snowbirds can come down to beautiful Mt. Dora and enjoy Renninger’s in the winter months. It has been around for decades, yet always seems to surprise collectors in a nice way when they discover it.
Events at Renninger’s run every weekend, but the schedule is quite varied. Price was $10 the first day, $6 Saturday, then $4 on Sunday. Now the Extravaganza is more monumental with just a few events this Winter. Promoters work to make just a few days epic for stronger attendance:
November 17th, 18th, and 19th, 2017
January 19th, 20th, and 21st, 2018
February 16th, 17th, and 18th, 2018
We made it to the early November “Extravaganza” this year, 2017, and had a delightful time. The sun was out with partial clouds. The temperature was a perfect 68F. The dealers were out with thousands of wares and spread over countless rows. It was great fun if you have broad tastes for antiques, near-tiques, faux-teaques, Almost-teaques, and then real crusty oldies. The attendance skewed in this direction too.
Our visit started as a meet-up with a north Florida toy dealer and an introduction to the event. We pulled in off the main road and then went down a dirt path. -Then down 90 degrees to that, then up the hill, then past the horse arena, then by the set of live oak trees. Truly, this was about a mile adventure and a 10 minute drive by preview. Booths from the “Art Village” were down below down the lowlands and some event buildings were up on top of another hill. It is quite a hilly venue for Florida!
We found about five official toy dealers selling pressed steel, models, some boats, and a nice mix. Then we found another 5 (that we could count) selling a table of mixed in toys. Prices were fair, but far from sleepy. Decades ago, pre-internet, this must have been a feast! As is, it was a pleasure to see so much in person and review details in the flesh.
Overall we had a great time, and frankly, enjoyed the company the most. We had a great set of hosts and really enjoyed seeing the dealers again and talking shop. The ice cream was splendid, the hotdogs were tempting, the kettle corn was in the air. Renninger’s is such a mix that you can’t expect what’s on the tip of your mind. Expect the unexpected and come hungry! Oh, and bring a little Red Wagon if you are a serious buyer along with your running shoes!