Glass Show Sparkles For Area Collectors

Jim and Marjorie Wiley had to downsize their collection of Depression-era glass when they moved to a smaller house: now, they only have about 4,000 pieces.

Only? When it comes to collecting the nostalgic items, passionate collectors say, there is no glass ceiling, so long as they can find room for their treasures. And once people "get" the Depression-era glass fever -- which will be celebrated at an event in New Kensington this weekend -- there's no stopping them.

"You become obsessed," says Jim Wiley, 65, of McMurray, Washington County. He and his wife have been collecting the glass since 1980. "You go to flea markets, you go to auctions, you go to garage sales. ... We've done all that nonsense throughout the years.

"A rule we try to abide by is one thing in, one thing out," he says. "But people would probably laugh at us if they saw all this stuff we had."

The 30th Annual Glass and Pottery Show, hosted by the Three Rivers Depression-Era Glass Society, is today and Sunday at the Clarion Hotel, 300 Tarentum Bridge Road. The show features more than 25 glass and pottery dealers from all over the county. The products, which cost anywhere from a few dollars to several hundred, range from plates and vases to ashtrays and giant bowls, in a rainbow of colors. Whether visitors are new to the glass hobby or seasoned pros, they will find something to love about the show, which will have more than 120 tables full of merchandise, says Jim Leasure, show chairman.

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