PLANT CITY, Fla. (FOX 13) - It is a step back in time; hundreds of vintage signs, antique peddle cars, and Americana memorabilia will go up for sale this weekend at an auction in Plant City.
The nearly 300 items come from the personal collections of two locals. Bruce Robinson is one of them. He’s been buying, trading and collecting since he was about 22.
"60 years, I would say, long time, yeah," said Bruce.
The subject of his hobby may have changed over the years from cars to brass cash registers, to oil cans and road art. But the 82-year-old always had an eye for quality.
“It's dye cut, in other words, it isn't a square sign, it isn't a round sign," Bruce said.
Everything Bruce gathered over the years was hung in his Sumter County garage, a kind of museum of vintage Americana with pieces from the 1910s through the 1950s.
"It’s the hunt that’s the fun, you know, you go out and you travel around or you go places," said Bruce.
For him, hunting for deals isn't the same as it used to be. And this week he hauled about 100 items to plant city to be auctioned off.
"If I left it to somebody they really wouldn't know what to do with it, so I decided this is the time to let it go," he explained.
Every single piece of road art and memorabilia will be sold, along with about 200 items from another local collector.
Auctioneer John Harris expects a big crowd, with bidders from across the country hoping to score a deal.
"It’s a large collection, and it’s all original, and there's a lot of pieces you don’t see very often go up on the block," Harris said.
For the sellers, they're rolling the dice liquidating their collections this way.
"You can’t always hit a home run every single time, you take what you get," said Bruce.
He’s hopeful he will come out on top of his investments.
"Everything in here is gonna be presented, the highest bidder gets it regardless of the final bid,” Harris explained. “There certainly is a risk for the sellers, they’re taking it."
If you want to get a first-hand look before you bid, there is a preview Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Doors open Saturday at 9 a.m with the auction starting at 10 a.m.
The auction is being held at the former Uncle Mike’s Smokehouse location at 106 E FL-60 in Plant City. For more information, visit http://www.harrisauctionsllc.com.