Swap meet benefits Babb’s Park restoration project

By Lisa Stone - ReminderNews
West Suffield - posted Thu., Oct. 31, 2013
Chick Perry returns to his home town to support the restoration of the skating rink at Babb’s Park. Photos by Lisa Stone.
Chick Perry returns to his home town to support the restoration of the skating rink at Babb’s Park. Photos by Lisa Stone.

The ongoing restoration of Babb’s Park skating rink got a helping hand from proceeds of 3-G’s fourth annual Flea Market and Swap Meet on Saturday, Oct. 26. People from all over come out to brighten the future of the rink by buying and selling various items.

Chick Perry was at the swap meet to lend support to his family. His brother had a vendor’s area to sell car parts, and his nephew, George Perry, was the coordinator of the event. Babb’s Park has many memories for Perry. “This place is full of memories,” said Perry. “I spent countless hours at this place. I remember going to concerts and different events here. Then, it became a roller skating rink. That is where I met my wife, Johana. She was 15 at the time. I knew she was the one for me. I hope they get to restore the building. It would be a real shame to let it just fade away.”

Andrea Holmes was searching for hidden treasures. “My husband is off looking for car parts and I am looking around at other stuff,” said Holmes. “This is my second year of coming here. So far, my husband bought a lawn mower. Today, I am keeping my eyes open for antique tools. Maybe some old garden tools that I could hang in my house for decoration.” Holmes was not alone in her quest. Her canine companion, Lola, was there every step of the way.

Robert and Tanya Aylward had a booth of hand-crafted jewelry that was made by Tanya. “I make all of this jewelry myself,” said Tanya. “The name of my business is Weddings at Home. I make veils, do the flowers arrangements, decorations and anything else you can think of. I sell my jewelry at shows and fairs. People can either buy the jewelry now or e-mail me a request at tanyaaylward@sbcglobal.net.” Robert owns a 1964 Pontiac Catalina. He usually shows the car at swap meets and car shows, but it is already buttoned up for the winter months. “I really love coming to swap meets,” said Robert. “This is a good cause, too.”

Joe and Gloria Dumas from Manchester came out to the event. “I collect old lamps,” said Joe. “I found a beautiful one today. They just don’t make lamps like this anymore. If you want to find unique things like this, you need to go to flea markets and swap meets. That is where things like this lamp would be. The trick is to find a shade to match the lamp. That is the difficult part.”

“This is our fourth year for this event,” said George Perry, coordinator for the swap meet. “There is a lot of work that goes into organizing an event like this… Each year the meet gets bigger and bigger. I am so happy to have all of the proceeds of the day donated to the restoration of the Babb’s rink. It is a great way to raise money for a wonderful cause.”

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