RWCS MidWinter 2015 to be in Oconomowoc, WI

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RED WING COLLECTORS TO GATHER IN WISCONSIN, FEB. 6-8

RED WING, MN. – Collectors of Red Wing stoneware and pottery might find a new centerpiece for their collection if they come out to the Red Wing Collectors Society’s (RWCS) Annual MidWinter GetTogether at the Olympia Resort & Conference Center in Oconomowoc, Wis. from Feb. 6-8.

The big news this year is that the event is moving to Wisconsin after being held in Iowa for the past 14 years.

“We’re excited about the move to Oconomowoc because we expect it will attract a large group of collectors who have never attended the MidWinter event before,” says Stacy Wegner, RWCS executive director. “Wisconsin also has the most RWCS members living in it outside of Minnesota, so we’re hoping to see a larger attendance this year.”

The RWCS is devoted to those who collect a diverse line of crocks, jugs, churns, dinnerware and art pottery manufactured in Red Wing from the 1880s to 1960s. Hundreds of people from around the country are expected to attend the February event, which will help tie collectors over until the next RWCS National Convention in Red Wing in July. These two events serve as great opportunities for members to connect over Red Wing and learn about the history of the potteries that once operated in Red Wing, their diverse production lines and the impact they had on the American pottery industry.

As with any large antique event, the opportunity to buy and sell is top of mind for collectors and dealers. In this case, the RWCS MidWinter GetTogether never disappoints. Many attendees will prop open their doors and sell Red Wing wares from their hotel rooms during the weekend – some starting as early as the night of Wednesday, Feb. 4. A formal Show & Sale will run from 1:00 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 7 followed by an auction at 5 p.m. – both of which are open to the public. Auction proceeds will benefit the Pottery Museum of Red Wing and more information can be found at www.houghtonauctions.com or the classifieds section at www.redwingcollectors.org. Whether you’re new to collecting Red Wing or an experienced collector, anyone and everyone is invited to attend this fun event and find a new piece for their collection.

The MidWinter GetTogether also includes a number of other organized activities like a “Friday Night Lights” reception featuring food, prizes and fun from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 6. The theme of this year’s event is “The Big Game”. Attendees are encouraged to wear their favorite football team’s apparel to take part in the fun, whether their favorite is from the professional, college or high school ranks.

Education is also a major focus of the event. Highlighting this year will be keynote presentations from RWCS Vice President Paul Wichert and RWCS Foundation Board Member Stan Lueck. Wichert will present “RWCS Technology & How to Use it” and Lueck will speak about creating the RWCS Foundation Endowment Fund to keep the Pottery Museum of Red Wing running strong for future generations.

New this year, RWCS Historian Nancy Lambert will talk about the process she went through when creating the Kansas/Missouri Red Wing advertising book. Longtime MidWinter speakers and RWCS Hall of Fame members Steve Showers and Dennis Nygaard will give separate presentations on their findings from digging in the pottery dumps this year. Dinnerware experts Larry Roschen and Terry Moe, who are also RWCS Hall of Fame members, will discuss Red Wing dinnerware. Curious about how things are going at the new museum in Red Wing, Minnesota? Members of the RWCS Foundation Board will hold a Q & A session to answer your questions. And as a carryover from the  past location in Iowa, Mark Wiseman will speak about the potteries that operated in Des Moines, Boone and Warren counties. In addition, new RWCS KidsView education program chairperson Linda Wipperling will keep with “The Big Game” theme and feature activities that will teach younger collectors about the different pieces Red Wing made for professional and college sports teams, such as the Little Brown Jug trophy that is awarded to the winner of every Minnesota/Michigan college football game.

All activities will be held at the Olympia Resort & Conference Center, 1350 Royal Mile Rd. in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, which is off I-94 just 30 minutes west of Milwaukee. Visit www.redwingcollectors.org to register or learn more about the MidWinter GetTogether, or the annual Red Wing Collectors Society Summer Convention, which is slated for July 9-11 in Red Wing.

The RWCS MidWinter GetTogether is one of three different antique shows that will have quality Red Wing and vintage advertising for sale in Wisconsin’s Waukesha County on the weekend of Feb 6-8. Featuring more than 55 quality dealers, the 64th Annual Winter Wisconsin Antiques Dealers Association Show is slated for 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 6 and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 7 at the Waukesha County Expo Center Forum Building, 1000 Northview Road, Waukesha, WI 53188. Call 414-510-4441 or visit www.wisconsinantiquedealers.com for more information.

In addition, 150 sales tables will be set up at the 43rd Annual Milwaukee Antique Bottle and Advertising Show from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 8 at the Country Springs Hotel, 2810 Golf Road, Pewaukee, WI 53072. Contact David Kapsos at 608-838-8041 or bottleshow@charter.net for info. Gas prices are down, so don’t miss this unique opportunity to hunt for new pieces or sell your inventory at these great events!

Annual membership in the Red Wing Collectors Society costs only $35 and includes six 16-page full-color newsletters mailed to your home throughout the year. The Red Wing Collectors Society was founded in 1977 in Red Wing, Minn. and is devoted to educating people about all American pottery. There are more than 4,000 members worldwide. The Red Wing Potteries had diverse pottery lines that included stoneware, dinnerware and art pottery. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 800-977-7927, e-mail membership@redwingcollectors.org or log on to www.redwingcollectors.org. You can also join the RWCS on Facebook and follow it on Twitter at twitter.com/RWpottery.