Embarking on a trip of historical proportions

HURON – Antique dealer Andy Gross will bring four Indian peace pipes and an ash burl wood covered dish to Florida next week with the hope of finding out from an Antiques Roadshow expert what their true value is.
“It’s got to be a very unusual item to get on the show,” he said. “We’ll see what happens. I’m not going to get my hopes up, but there’s always a chance.”
Through a computer drawing, he was fortunate to get two tickets to an April 12 filming in Sarasota, Fla., and will be accompanied by friend Joe Small.
Gross discovered the peace pipes and dish among the contents of his Miller antique store when he purchased the building. The previous owner had clipped a newspaper story that indicated that the ash burl dish could be worth thousands of dollars.
“It could be nothing, but it could be something,” he said.
One of the four peace pipes was possibly originally discovered in Florida, he said.
He hopes to learn more about those items as well.
“That will be interesting, to find out if it actually did come from down there,” Gross said.
It’s not his first experience with the Antiques Roadshow, a popular PBS program that has been on the air for a few decades.
He won tickets to an Antiques Roadshow filming in Rapid City in 2012 so is quite familiar with the process. He was one of 40 to be filmed that day.
Ticket holders initially stand in line to wait their turn at the first table, where they show what they have brought with them. Based on the category of antique, they are given cards directing them to a specific appraiser’s table in the room.
They then stand in line again. When it’s their turn to meet with the appraiser, they’re told immediately if their item is special or not. If it is, they’re asked if they want to be filmed.
Up until filming begins and the appraiser begins talking, they’re not told anything about their item, Gross said.
“You have no idea what the appraiser is going to say, so it’s a surprise,” he said.
Gross hopes he is once again one of the 2,000 people in attendance who are filmed at the Sarasota event. If he is, he will also be given an approximate time frame when the episode will air on PBS.
“It’s quite a deal to get filmed because you’ve got to have something special,” he said.

Andy Gross, right, and friend Joe Small hold an ash burl wood dish and Indian peace pipes they’re bringing to an Antiques Roadshow filming in Sarasota, Fla. next Thursday.

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