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The San Diego Old House Fair In Review

By Julie Kolb

While clouds replaced San Diego's normally sunny skies at this year's Fifth Annual Old House Fair, overcast skies and drizzle didn't dampen the enthusiasm of Fair attendees and vendors who converged in historic South Park on Saturday, June 21.

Although the turnout was no doubt affected by the pouring rain in other parts of the county, this year's fair proved to be quite a success based on the comments of the 500-600 fair attendees and of the attending vendors. Most of the vendors reported a great response: People came to the fair looking for goods and services for their older homes, and shop they did. Local businesses reported their best Old House Fair ever; we suspect shelter from the weather contributed to that. No matter what the reason, many more people are now aware of these great businesses located in the heart of South Park.

A standard favorite in the Old House Fair lineup, this year's Home Tour featured four great houses. The 300-plus tour participants enjoyed the leisure of no lines and more intimate tours. Many thanks to our homeowners, Terry Anderson, Patricia Kendall, Rancho Buena Vista Realty, and Will Nevilles and Judi Smith.

The fair's success proved that it remains a unique opportunity for homeowners who value an event that brings together the old house experts and contractors, the vendors, and the artists in a single location. Supplementing this lineup was our workshop series that provided homeowners with advice and hands-on demonstrations of door and lock maintenance by Dave Caldwell, of wood window repair and maintenance by Joy Pifer, and of native landscaping tips by Bonnie Poppe. We hope to expand this series even more next year.

In addition to the workshops that provided nitty-gritty details needed for home upkeep, we had our popular "Ask the Old House Experts" booth. The experts volunteering at the booth, Kathy Flanigan, Bruce Coons and David Marshall, provided homeowners with individual help on matters ranging from period-appropriate paint color to the steps necessary for applying for historic designation under the Mills Act.

While many homeowners are interested in getting more information on the Mills Act, there has been an increase in the homeowners who are interested in protecting their communities through historic district designation. New to this year's fair, the roundtable discussion on historic district designation sought to provide people with answers to some of their questions. This interest was perhaps reflected in the surprising increase in the number of out-of-town visitors. Many of these visitors came to learn how to develop more preservation action in their communities. Thanks to our moderators Allen Hazard and Janet O'Dea.

Although there is little doubt that the weather had an impact on our fundraising efforts, we are proud to report that the event raised $2,000. As is true of other SOHO special events, much of the success of this year's Old House Fair can be attributed to the hard work of our volunteers. Special events such as the Old House Fair and the Arts & Crafts Weekend raise the profile of SOHO's work in the community and provide a vehicle for raising funds vital to our mission; however, the success of each event hinges on the commitment and work of our volunteers.

Clouds and drizzle may have dampened the streets of the Fifth Annual Old House Fair, but they did not dampen any goodwill or high spirits. A positive energy permeated the entire event. We look forward to next year's Old House Fair and fair skies of blue!

Thanks to our sponsors, the North Park News and San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles Magazine, who also supplied fair goers with complimentary magazines. Thanks also to the South Park Business Association and the South Park Action Council, and a very special thank you to Diamond Environmental.

2003 - Volume 34, Issue 3


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Adding to the Controversy

A Salute to Our Volunteers

Announcing San Diego's First Modernism Weekend

San Diego Modernism Weekend

Julius Shulman

Vintage Trailer Show Rolls In

SOHO Volunteers Needed for Modernism Weekend

Most Endangered List of Historic Resources

Preservation Revolving Fund

People In Preservation Award Winners

An Evening with People In Preservation

Cross-Border Preservation Updates

Irving Gill in Oceanside

From Seismic Event to Spanish Style

Time is Not on our Side

The San Diego Old House Fair In Review

Annual Call For Board of Director Nominations

Rancho Guajome Celebrates 150 Years

Governor Appoints Dr. Susan Hector

Highway 101 Museum

Let's Talk Stucco

Thank You

Wish List

SOHO Congratulates the San Diego Historical Society

Whaley House Docents & Volunteers

The Verna House to be Renovated

SOHO Speakers Bureau

Volunteer Appreciation Party

Annual Meeting

Strength in Numbers

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