Through Sunday, the sleepy little town of Brimfield is swelling with visitors as it hosts one of the largest antiques and collectibles show in the world.

Through Sunday, the sleepy little town of Brimfield is swelling with visitors as it hosts one of the largest antiques and collectibles show in the world.


Since 1959 the show has drawn people from all over both the casual antiquer and serious collector including celebrities like Martha Stewart.


More than 6,000 dealers set up tents in 23 fields lining the main drag, Rte. 20, and they offer myriad different antiques, fakes and even things that are new.


The show is so large there's no way you can visit all the booths, but here's the  information you need to know:


WHAT: Brimfield Antique and Collectibles Show


DATES: Now through Sunday, July 15


HOURS: Sunup to sundown


DIRECTIONS: Take the Mass. Pike west to Exit 9 in Sturbridge and follow signs to Rte. 20 west. Travel seven miles, and you're there.


PARKING: Generally $3-$10, depending on location of lot. Shuttle buses take visitors from distant lots in closer to the action.


ADMISSION: Some dealers are located in fields run by promoters that charge an admission fee of around $5-$6, but many of the fields are free.


MORE INFO: Some dealers do take checks and credit cards. ATM machines are readily available, too. The Quabog Valley Chamber of Commerce has an information line at 413-283-6149, ext. 3, or online at www.Brimfieldshow.com or www.brimfield.com.


Tips for visiting Brimfield



Remember that the dealer is a person just like you who wants to get a good deal. If he or she is a Brimfield regular, they will know what they expect to get for an item, and sometimes will open with a slightly higher offer. You, of course, are free to counter. In general, dickering is the rule here.


You will always do better using that giant wad of cash than a check. It can't hurt to show the dealer the money.


Dress for success: Look like everyone else; casual dress is the norm.


If you see something you must have, pick it up and don't let it go. Don't leave the booth without leaving a retainer for the item.


Some dealers are willing to work out a layaway plan if you can't afford the whole amount up front.


Get to know the dealers who collect what you are looking for. If you don't see what you want, ask.


If you're a serious collector, get a T-shirt or a sign made up that says what you collect.


Go when it raining; you're more likely to close a deal to your advantage quicker.


Know what you're looking for. Do your research. Buy books on thetypes of items, antiques and collectibles you like.


Start as early as possible and hit the lunch carts by 11 a.m. they get crowded after that.


Check out the booths at the back of each field they are unlikelyto be professional dealers there and therefore you may find great deals.


Carry a fabric bag to gather up smaller items, and a plastic poncho, in case of rain.

SOURCE: WWW.BRIMFIELDSHOW.COM