I am a Kiwi transplanted to the Chicago suburbs, always up for an outing that involves food, art or animals. Visit me at www.thebunnyhugger.com.
Full of old and interesting items
There is no better excuse to get out of Chicago than the Elkhorn Flea Market. Held at The Walworth County Fairgrounds this event includes over 500 vendors offering a vast array of old and interesting collectables, curiosities and artefacts.
Truly "flea market" is a deceptively down market, as the vendors mainly sell antique and vintage wares of all kinds. And the variety is so great that I just could not look at everything! Compared to what you will pay in Chicago, prices range from reasonable to a complete bargain.
The Elkhorn Flea Market is held four times a year, with the next market scheduled for September 27th 2015. Many of the great bargains are larger items so I suggest taking a trolly or cart, you will see many other visitors have brought one along.
There is typical fair food, but it is tasty, reasonably priced, and many of the stalls and trucks are raising money for local community groups.
There is a dizzying array of antiques available at indoor and outdoor stalls. There are also a few specialty vendors to add even more interest. I particularly enjoyed the fresh market vegetable stall (giving away free samples), and several stalls with hunting trophies, taxidermy and agricultural antiques.
If you don't arrive early your best chance for parking is the neighboring high school ($3 per vehicle). Bring your comfortable shoes and decide on a "plan of attack" to cover the large area of the fairgrounds which is completely covered by vendors. Many sellers take only cash but there is a portable ATM at the main entrance if you run short.
My last visit saw me coming home with a deco chalkware statue, hand-carved wooden bias relief of a lady and a leopard (only $8!), a four-point deer rack, a wonderful piece of floral embroidery, a large print of Saint Francis of Assisi, and two enormous plastic ponies. And I certainly plan to be back in September to see what else I can find!