Raleigh Now Spotlight: Vintage Fan Fair


Glamping out at the Vintage Fan Fair

by Katherine Poole
photograph courtesy Vintage Fan Fair

Everything Old is New Again is the song everyone will be singing at the N.C. State Fairgrounds November 10 – 11.

The Fairgrounds’ first annual Vintage Fan Fair will caravan into the Fairgrounds’ Holshauser building for an event celebrating nostalgia for the early 20th century style, featuring vendors, a classic car and camper showcase, entertainment, and all kinds of activities.

The Holshauser building, which looks like a spaceship and was designed by renowned husband and wife team Peg and Edgar Hunter, has its own retro provenance as a prime example of mid-century architecture. (The Hunters are also responsible for designing the original North Hills Shopping Center, Ridgewood Shopping Center, and the Meredith Woods subdivision.)
Visitors to the Vintage Fan Fair can learn all about local architecture and North Carolina’s mod history.  George Smart, president of North Carolina Modernist Houses, will give a talk about how our state came to have one of the largest concentrations of modernist homes in the U.S.

The Vintage Fan Fair will also feature a marketplace of jury-selected vendors selling products, services, and activities to appeal to retro aesthetes interested in mid-century, industrial, farmhouse, and bohemian-chic design styles. You can shop for tchtochkes, schedule an Ava Gardner-esque glam photo session, or stop by a ’50s-styled living room to play vintage board games.

Visitors can also travel back in time with a stroll through a classic car exhibit and meet the owners who get their kicks in vintage woodies, microbuses, and ramblers. The fancy camping set can check out the Glamper Showcase, where a fleet of vamped up, tricked out mobile houses of all shapes and sizes will be on display to inspire hip 21st Century adventuring.

Because the fair takes place over the Veteran’s Day holiday, USO-worthy entertainment is planned to honor military service to our country in the modern era. Fair-goers also have the opportunity to make an even more personal thank you by typing a note to a veteran on a vintage typewriter.

The Vintage Fan Fair is a rare opportunity to learn about and engage in our past while saluting the innovators, adventurers, dreamers, and heroes whose style endures today.

Friday 12 – 8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; $8.50, 2 ticket package $12.50; military and children under 12 free; 1025 Blue Ridge Drive; thevintagelifestyleexperience.com