When designers Lucy Findlay and Valla Rogers put their heads together with a client, the sky is the limit. Can you say pneumatic elevator? Plus, you never know what you'll find at Spence's Bazaar in Dover.
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The Need to Spence
You never know what you’ll find at Spence’s Bazaar in Dover.
If you’re searching for a stereo to play the copy of The Partridge Family’s “Up to Date” that you scored at Vintage Records, Computer Tech can help. You’ll find a Technics SL-BL3 turntable ($175) to connect to a Pioneer SA9500II amplifier ($225) and power pair of outsized Fisher speakers—big mid-range, big woofers, refrigerator-sized cabinets—for $200.
Sure, you could spend half that $600 on a decent Aiwa bookshelf system at Best Buy, but you wouldn’t get all the hissing, popping and crackling that comes with spinning a well-loved copy of Roy Clark’s “Heart to Heart” on 100-percent genuine vinyl.
And that’s the beauty of Spence’s Bazaar, the biggest flea market in all of Kent: You may or may not find the very thing you’re looking for, but you’ll certainly find something you just have to have.
Among the aforementioned Spence’s vendors, count Elsie’s Stuff, where you’ll find used Rubbermaid containers, new Royal Crown 600-thread count bed sheets and Genie’s Deluxe 10-Piece Knife Set (“As Seen On TV”); Betty’s Books, with its inventory of $1 and $2 paperback romances and mysteries; Bygone’s well-sourced collection of decorative lamps and cut-glass tableware; Memorabilia, which offers country crafts and quilts; Phyllis’s Die-Cast Collectibles, with tables full of John Deere golf balls, collectible salt and pepper shakers, and faux Delftware; Virgil’s Oils for paintings on velvet; and Blake’s Furniture, where you could fill a house with every piece you need.
Known locally as The Sale—”My grandfather started calling it that,” says manager Jack Scott—Spence’s started as a livestock auction in 1933. “It’s just a nickname.” Spence’s is open Tuesday and Friday 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., and Saturday 7:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Plug 550 S. New St., Dover, into your GPS, or call 734-3441. —Mark Nardone