Carbondale’s first Arts and Antiques Week kicks off today and runs through July 16, with incentives and extended hours for a dozen downtown businesses.
“We wanted to do something together to put Carbondale on the map as an arts and antiques destination,” explained Bernard Poncelet, co-owner of European Antiques.
Most of the 12 participating galleries and antiques stores are within three blocks of Poncelet’s establishment, as well as the weekly farmers market, with which the event will overlap twice.
Frank Norwood, of the Main Street Gallery and Framer, acknowledged that many people don’t connect arts and antiques, but called them “a great mix.”
“These are unique items that you can’t just go to the Internet and find,” he said.
Each participating business is setting its own incentives. Some are offering discounts in industries where sales are almost unheard of, while others have opted for gifts with purchase. Many are also pulling out new inventory.
“It’s exciting to see what’s going on in Carbondale and be part of it,” said Out West Antiques’ Mindy Langston.
Poncelet, who also helped start First Fridays in Carbondale, is already thinking about next year. He hopes a simple first year will provide a solid foundation for expansion.
Until then, Poncelet and his fellow business owners are stocking up on extra fliers, so when folks come in looking for the arts and antiques experience, they can direct them to the best of what downtown Carbondale has to offer.