The sunny Saturday last August when the Antiques Roadshow pulled into town was just the beginning of the big show.
Thousands of hopefuls lined up and waited for hours to have their treasures appraised. Most were hoping for, if not their shot at 15 minutes of Public Television fame, a little good news.
Tomorrow night the episodes filmed in Spokane will air on KSPS public television.
Fleeta Holcomb, a Midway Elementary school first-grade teacher, was one of those in line. Accompanied by her mother, Shirley Green, Holcomb carried a reel-to-reel recording of a 1964 Seattle Beatles appearance she’d won from a local radio station. She also pushed a small antique child’s wheeled chair.
“We decided to go to the collectables table first since that line was the longest, to see if my reel-to-reel tape of a Beatles press conference before their Seattle concert in ‘64 was worth anything,” Holcomb said. “We were in that line over two hours, for my two-minute appraisal!”
The verdict on the recording was mixed. Because so many tapes had been dubbed from the original, value was low – around $60 to $80. Holcomb’s program from the concert was worth around $20.
But it was the chair that snagged the celebrity.
Leigh and Leslie Keno, twin antiques experts, are show favorites. Holcomb says one of the Keno twins (she isn’t sure which one) walked up and began to examine the chair.
Keno told Holcomb the chair was a child’s invalid chair, made of birch and produced in Europe some time in the late 19th century.
The chair had been used in a display at a department store in Denver and was purchased by Holcomb’s cousin 30 years ago.
“She bought it for $30 and he valued it at $800 to $1,200,” Holcomb said. “That turned out to be a pretty good investment.”
Holcomb wasn’t chosen to be filmed for the television show but she says that didn’t lessen the experience for her.
“Oh, it was a blast,” she said. “I enjoyed talking to the people who were waiting in line with us and we did see several people pulled out to be taped. That was fun.”
Holcomb didn’t even complain about standing in line for hours waiting on her turn.
“Every time I watch the ‘Roadshow,’ I’ll remember our day there,” she said. “The best part was just getting to spend the day with my sweet mom!”