Get ready for this fall’s Vintage Shop Hop - October 6-7
Vintage lovers, shopaholics, and antiquarians rejoice! For The Vintage Shop Hop is coming back this Fall 2023!
Event planner and creator Ann Campos is the brains behind the business plan of The Vintage Shop Hop, a semi-annual event that showcases over 400 vintage shops, antique stores, barn sales, and ladies' boutiques in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin. The two-day-long, self-guided road trip typically takes place in the fall and spring seasons.
This fall, The Vintage Shop Hop will take place on October 6 and 7 and marks the 10th year of what has been hailed as the ‘mother lode’ of all vintage road trips.
The idea originated ten years ago, when Ann, who firmly believes in shopping local, wanted to find a way to help out locally-owned vintage shops, antique stores, and boutiques during the months when shoppers aren't shopping as frequently.
Ann has an extensive background in marketing and spent several years producing large vintage markets. She used her experience promoting businesses and married it with her love of all things vintage to create The Vintage Shop Hop.
During the event, shoppers can click, tap or open the interactive Google Map, to check out the ever-growing list of participating shops and vendors that is linked from The Vintage Shop Hop’s Facebook page. Between the company’s three social media pages, (where the event is promoted), the fan base has grown to over 78,000 followers.
Each shop is required to have an “in-store” promotion for the weekend, and many shops go miles beyond just complimentary refreshments (like mimosas and dessert treats). “We encourage the shops to create a day unlike the other 363 days of the year,” says Campos.
As a result, shoppers will find fun promotions like “pop a balloon” or “spin the wheel” to determine their discount, door prizes, meet-the-maker, paint demos, live music, food trucks, and free swag bags just for stopping in. Others create punch cards and promotions to get people moving around their region, hire live music, and invite food trucks to park in their lots. All shops will be ready and waiting to greet new and familiar faces to their store and provide the shoppers with the best in customer service.
Starting with 180 shops ten years ago, the Vintage Shop Hop has increased in popularity with each event. This year, we can expect over 400 participating shops. Currently, there are eleven in the mini-region Ann refers to as The Central Stateline Participants:
- The Frosted Farmhouse: 112 Hawick Street, Rockton, IL
- Pick-a-Dilly Antiques: 120 W Main Street, Rockton, IL
- JR Finally Art Studio & Gallery: 210 W Main Street, Rockton, IL
- Angela’s Attic: 1020 Gardner Street, South Beloit, IL
- Best of Beloit Vintage Mall: 1019 Gardner Street, South Beloit, IL
- Hidden Treasures Mall & Antiques: 6329 N 2nd Street Highway 251, Loves Park, IL
- Sweet Pea Vintage: 12875 Caledonia Road, Belvidere, IL
- East State Antique and Collectible Mall: 5411 E State Street, Rockford, Il
- Rags to Vintage: 4760 IL-173, Poplar Grove, IL
- Down on the Farm Antiques and Collectibles: 2705 Blake Rd, Garden Prairie, IL
The list doesn't stop there. Remember, this event covers the entire southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois regions. Thousands of eagerly waiting shoppers look forward to the twice-yearly opportunity to be a tourist in their own area, and to find one-of-a-kind pieces, rare or antique collectibles, unique home decor, and more.
There is still time for shops to register to be a part of The Vintage Shop Hop by clicking the “sign up” tab on the event’s Facebook Page, or by directly messaging Ann, who says, “I really think if a shop is not participating, it could only be because they don't know about it. This is the best shopping experience that people want and a golden opportunity to showcase your business.” Registration is happening now through September 22, 2023. Shops will remain on the list and stay on the map for six months, in time for the Spring’s Vintage Shop Hop.
Ann feels this is also a time for shoppers to be reminded of the importance of supporting our local small businesses, stating, “If you don't support the local guy, who will know if they exist? Or how they exist? This is a way for you to be involved in your community, to be a part of your downtown. People are so excited about this list. Get off your couch and go support the local guy!”
Who knows what you'll find while shopping? Ann assures you that what you won’t find are the same things you'd find in big-box stores.
She says, “There has been a huge resurgence in vintage decor- even if it’s just one piece, vintage adds a lot of character to a room. This is a lifestyle for some people.”
So clear out your schedule for that weekend, grab your favorite shopping buddy, and get ready for a vintage adventure!
I don't know about you, but I know where I will be on October 6th and 7th. Hope to see you all there!
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