Thousands in Oronoco for the 45th annual Gold Rush Days - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Thousands in Oronoco for the 45th annual Gold Rush Days


Thousands of antique lovers and vendors were in downtown Oronoco Friday for the annual Gold Rush Days now in its 45th year.

Vendors took over downtown and the Zumbro River banks with vintage and hand-made items for sale. It's a one-of-a-kind antiques and arts sale; think garage sale on a much larger scale. Anything from jewelry, toys, old radios, things you can use for decoration around the house or the in garden there's no knowing what you'll find here.
Every year vendors from all over the country take over downtown with vintage and hand-made items for sale.
The event attracts thousands of people, and it's a huge help to the community in Oronoco.
"All the money that we have left over gets back into the community - the fire department, the first responders, the seniors, the boy scouts, all those organizations that are non profit, we look for that," said Chairman Beau Hanenberger.

"It's one of the best shows, I think, around the country for a lot of different reasons. First of all they've got a wide variety of dealers, but I love the community aspect of what they do," said vendor and author Sue Whitney.

Whitney of Lanesboro started making her art out of necessity, to afford college. Now, she uses her skills to teach people to take what she calls junk, and create art.
"I like to build, but I also like to design so it's about giving people step-by-step projects on something that they might not think about. But then I like to take it one step further and show them how to use it in their home," said Whitney.

Other vendors are here to revive something thought to be long gone.
"We're kind of like an old fashioned music store that used to be around and of course, now most of them have kinda minimized their selection but we still have probably the best selection of oldies in Minnesota," said Awesome Oldies Owner Jeff King. "A lot of old classic TV shows from the 50s and 60s, and then some really nice box sets too, collections that normally you can't find too many places these days." 
Awesome Oldies has about ten-thousand CD's and DVD's, as well as Comic books and comic book posters.

If you're left feeling overwhelmed by all the items available, here's Whitney's advice: "Junk does kinda speak to you, or vintage pieces, and I tell people to trust their gut and get what they love."

If you're looking for something odd and unique, chances are you're going to find it at the Oronoco Gold Rush Days. It stars again on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Sunday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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