MAMARONECK, N.Y. Katie Coughlin was driving down Boston Post Road on Sunday when she saw a sign for the Mamaroneck Schools Foundation Antiques Fair at Mamaroneck High School, and decided to stop in for a look.
Coughlin, of Mamaroneck, admired the dishes on display at Yonkers resident Bettye Unger's table, and was impressed at the diverse selection, something the show's manager, Susan Levine, strives for each year.
"It's popular because there are so few shows left in lower Westchester County," Levine said. "I never have a problem filing space, and I have a waiting list."
Antiques dealers from all over bring a wide variety of items, including books, vintage jewelry, clothing, dishes, posters and small furniture. Katherine Boone of Timeless Treasures in Pelham told customers that "every day is an antique show" at her combination shop and art gallery.
Levine, of Scarsdale, is an antiques dealer who likes to keep a low profile. But, each year, she organizes the antiques fair, which was held in the Post Road gym Saturday and Sunday. The show has run for 18 years.
For two years before that, a local parent ran an antiques show at Hommocks Middle School. When that parent's children graduated, Levine took over the fair, which had to be moved to Mamaroneck High School.
For the next 10 years, it benefited the Actionville Program, which replaced textbooks with firsthand experience for fifth- and sixth-graders in the late 1990s. When the program was discontinued, the fair's organizers decided to benefit the Mamaroneck Schools Foundation.
"It's one of the main fundraisers for the Mamaroneck Schools Foundation," said Pat Melrose, a board member for the foundation. Melrose was one of three board members who formed a subcommittee to run the fair's admissions and bake sale.
The foundation, which held its annual grant awards ceremony March 6, has given out approximately 300 grants since 1996 totaling more than $2.5 million to fund programs and equipment that don't fit into the regular school budget. They charged a $6 door fee and received a portion of the vendors' fees, which Levine said hovered under $300.
"It's just a great program, because the teachers that have a project that doesn't fit into the budget can write up a grant proposal," Melrose said of the foundation.
Elaine Mason of White Plains has patronized the fair in past years. Her favorite purchase was a World War I poster.
Jonathan Mayer, whose children attend Hommocks, stumbled on Art Finkel's collection of original vintage European posters and lithographs, which include old movie posters and advertisements dating back as far as the 1890s, the collector said. Mayer, who loves hunting for antiques, was amazed by the professionally cleaned and restored posters.
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