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Macedon Flea Market celebrates 50 years
Next year sees the golden anniversary of Macedon Fire Brigade flea market. With planning well underway for the next one in February, we spoke with brigade Captain Greg Snart to find out more about this long-running event.
The annual flea market has a rich history and is the brigade’s major fundraising activity. The event raised $23,000 in 2017 and has raised well over $200,000 over 50 years allowing the brigade to replace their vehicles.
Harking back to 1968, the initial idea came from the ladies auxiliary. The community donated bric-a-brac, clothing and large items. Today, this simple formula remains the same with no price tags, an abundance of choice and that broad grin when you find a bargain.
It’s the personal touch of working with local businesses and the hundreds of hours of commitment over the year that sees brigade members frequently grabbing their cars and trailers and dropping by local houses to pick up contributions.
Nothing is too big or small, even pianos… not just one but three in one year. A pianola and 35 scrolls sold to a bush balladeer who had heard through the grapevine of this prized item.
Atmosphere is a crucial component at the town’s social event of the year. Greg says the secret of their success from day one has been to offer a family friendly all-round experience.
“A not-to-be-missed and major attraction is the live auction. For 3.5 hours, around 100 items an hour are sold. A key tip is to keep it moving and make the crowd laugh. With auctioneer Steve Graham’s wicked sense of humour and the ability to ad lib an auction item, it’s no wonder a local catchphrase is “buy it this year, use it and take it back next year!”.
“Look out for his trusty scribe Harry Hill who, along with his wife Julie, has been a part of this special event since the early eighties.”
We did ask Greg how many items have made their way to his family home and the laugh down the phone said it all.
Whether you’re a local or grabbing the V/Line train to wander Victoria, take a day out on 24 February 2018 and become part of this historic event.
If you would like more information on the market, head to http://macedoncfa.com
CFA is running a series of stories about the different ways brigades fundraise. To see these stories click on the links below.