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Urban Salvage Market and Antique Show sets up in Wenonah Park

August 11, 2016       Leave a Comment
By: Pati LaLonde

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Steve Berge and daughter Emilee McBratnie have been learning local soldiers for the past 17 years.
(MyBayCity Photo by Pati LaLonde

Steve Berge has stories to tell.

Stories about men like Irum Collins, a Rhodes native, who was a messenger with the 29th Division during World War I, and Bay City native Edward Schwartz, a paratrooper with the 82nd Air Born in World War II.

And a few about DeFoe Shipbuilding Co.

Berge is one of the more than 100 booths set up for the second annual Urban Salvage Market and Antique Show running from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday in Wenonah Park. Admission is $4.

Money raised from the event goes to Bay County Relay for Life.

When it comes to this show, Berge, and partner Gregg Poulus are a bit of an oddity - nothing in his booth is for sale. It's all about telling the stories of the brave men who fought in world wars.

Yes, there are uniforms, and medals, and photos, but the display goes way beyond that.

"It's not just a whole bunch of uniforms set up," he said. "It's the story of an individual and his time in the service," said Berge. "It's amazing to be there and people walk by and say "I knew him. It's a hobby for me, my payment is the thanks I get from the family."

This year something new has been added. Running into Chad Keene, great-grandson of Herman E. Shorkey, a worker at DeFoe Ship Building Co., in the 1930s and 40s, the men have a display about the local company that also played a part in world wars.

"I have multiple early photos of DeFoe," Berge said. "It opened in 1905 and it's hard to find DeFoe stuff, A lot of it wasn't saved. A lot of stuff on display will be related to Shorkey."

While the Berge/Poulus tent is a place to hear stories, the other booths are where to find new ideas on how to repurpose items instead of tossing them in the trash and perhaps add to a collection or start a new one.

Howie Diefenbach, the organizer of the event and owner of Americana Co. Antique Mall, says this year's show is once again a mixed bag of items.

"We have people with repurposed industrial items, items ready to be restored, mid-century modern items, vintage clothing, and a general line of antiques, toys, furniture, glassware, and pottery," he said.

Downtown Bay City merchants have jumped on the recycling bandwagon as well, once again hosting ReEvent with the idea to repurpose, redesign and reuse old items.

Merchants are also getting into the spirit of things, competing to see who does it best unique item out of wine bottles and/or corks.

It's up to the public to pick the winner and perhaps win one of four $25 Downtown Bay City Gift Certificates. Check out who is participating at

Something for everyone is available at the Urban Salvage Market and Antique Show
Photo by Pati LaLonde

Visitors take a look at the collection of material from area soldiers in the Berge/Poulus tent.
Photo by Pati LaLonde

Edward Schwartz's uniform and medals are on display, and Steve Berge has a story or two to tell of this Bay City soldier from the 82nd Airborn.
Photo by Pati LaLonde

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Pati LaLonde

Pati is a freelance writer with experience in all things pertaining to Bay County, Michigan.

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