On June 30, 2018, Antique Archaeology hosted their 2nd ever Kid Picker Flea Market in downtown LeClaire, Iowa where the roles were flipped and the kids were the vendors and the adults were the customers. A total of 31 kids between the ages of 6 and 17 traveled with their families from all over the country to sell their antique/vintage/handmade treasures to the public—despite the sweltering heat index of 106 degrees! That didn’t stop the crowds of locals, tourists, Mike Wolfe, and his family, from coming out to support these young entrepreneurs.
Below are moments captured during Kid Picker Flea Market 2018 by LeClaire photographer, Kevin E. Schmidt/Maquoketa Studios.
The event kicked off with a motivational speech from the American Picker himself. Holding his 6-year-old daughter, Charlie, in his arms, Mike spoke to the crowd about celebrating a child’s mind and why it’s important to encourage a kid’s interest in collecting treasures, especially in the disposable/tech-saturated generation they’re growing up in. He also spoke directly to the kids urging them to follow their picking passions because they’re the ones who will be responsible for telling the stories of American industry and history for the next generation.
Mike declared the Flea Market open with a loud yell as the kids ran down to the levee along the Mississippi River. They assumed their positions at their booths which they had decorated themselves with homemade signs, business cards, and displays.
During market hours, local businesses hosted events, bike races (provided by the River Valley Optimist Club), food and drinks (provided by Big Dave & Holly’s), a history exhibit of the telephone (presented by the Buffalo Bill Museum) and an upcycled craft with old keys (presented by Unique Creations and Fancy Pants Boutique) made possible by the donation of the members of Picker Nation. Even the LeClaire Fire Department fire truck came by to deliver some sweet relief from the heat with a bit of water.
Mike stayed for the entire event walking around visiting each booth, asking questions, and buying picks.
Flea market goers enjoyed LIVE music from Finding Home — a kids only family band.
The weather was hot, but the crowds were out in full force searching for their new favorite treasures.
Mike added this foam gator head to his collection of oddities like Wolfe Boy, Gypsy Gramma, Oddfellows skeletal bust.
The Twilight, a lavish Victorian riverboat and LeClaire gem, chauffered Kid Pickers and their families on cruises up and down the Mississippi River all afternoon.
The Kid Picker class of 2018 group photo!
For details of the event and inspiration on how to host one in your town visit Antique Archeology’s Kid Picker Flea Market Page