By Roger Baker
One of the major events on the County calendar is coming up this weekend, and this year it will be bigger and better than ever.
The 10th annual Gilpin County Flea Market will be held at the Fairgrounds on Friday and Saturday, June 7th and 8th, from 9 to 4 each day.
Though this is the 10th year of the County sponsoring the sale, the Flea Market started as a fund raiser for the High Country Auxiliary more than 20 years ago, and grew until it became too big an event for that worthy group to handle on its own.
The Auxiliary remains by far the largest vendor at the Flea Market, but by moving their event to the spacious County facility, we’re able to offer space to dozens of other vendors, primarily local, to offer their wares as well. Lots of Gilpinites take advantage of the opportunity to clear out their garages, and make a few bucks selling their unwanted items to other locals who might need those things.
In fact, it certainly will take a few hours to work thoroughly through the tons of merchandise, new and used, that the vendors will be offering. That in turn means that some food service is in order, and this year we’ll have two food vendors supplying burritos, hamburgers, and brats.
Another service that has attached itself to the Flea Market in recent years is the CSU Extension’s sale of mountain-hardy plants; that starts at 9 on Saturday, and the plants usually sell out quickly.
From the County’s perspective, a first this year will be a sale of surplus equipment. As our operational needs change over the years, we always end up with extra, outdated material – everything from ledger books to message pads – that doesn’t really fit our needs anymore. Storing it is taking up valuable space, so we figured we might as well get the taxpayers some money back by selling the stuff.
And it’s not just office supplies – both Public Works and the Sheriff’s Office will have surplus vehicles for sale as well. By County policy, those will be offered by sealed bid auction; interested parties can put in bids, and the Commissioners will open the bids next Tuesday, June 11th. So potential buyers can’t take the vehicles home from the Flea Market, but they can at least get a good look at them.
Although the Flea Market itself is just the two days, Friday and Saturday, the fun at the Fairgrounds continues on Sunday, when GCART – the Gilpin County Animal Response Team – inaugurates a new gymkhana series for local horsemen and horsewomen.
This is the first of a three-event “buckle series,” culminating with the finals on August 18th, at the Gilpin County Fair. There will be three timed races at each event counting toward the buckle awards, and registration fees are structured to encourage the whole family to participate, as are a number of “fun runs” for those not quite ready for competition. Registration for the June 9th event will be that day from 10 to 10:45; the racing will begin at 11:30.
Of course, all this is contingent on everyone having the weekend off. We hope that the Auxiliary isn’t off feeding firefighters working a blaze someplace, and that the GCART members can be up here, rather than evacuating animals from wildfire-threatened areas.
So – as the Bluebell fire just south of us in Jefferson and Clear Creek counties shows – we still need to keep praying for rain.
Just not this weekend.