Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Searching for car stuff at the First Fridays event in the West Bottoms

Do you like treasure hunting? Discovering that rare vintage car collectable can be pretty exciting, but traveling from antique store to junk shop can be expensive and time-consuming.

There is a trending pastime in Kansas City known as “First Fridays,” and more and more collectors are doing their shopping all in one place.

Most of this is happening on the first weekend of the month in Kansas City’s West Bottoms area. Primarily known in modern times for Halloween haunted houses, the historic landmark buildings are now homes for several antique and vintage clothing shops.

Now I’m not going to say this is the ultimate destination for old model cars, car parts, and vintage tools. That stuff is there, but you have to do a little looking. I found a Nash Metropolitan door, a variety of pedal cars and metal truck toys, and even a couple of full-scale vehicles parked here and there. There were also some old racing trophies, tools, and of course, license plates.

Bargains? Eh, that’s not something of which I found an abundance. Remember, it was better than 100 degrees this weekend, and there were still so many people down there that I could hardly turn around. This deal is popular. Maybe too popular. I don’t know if these people are watching too much American Pickers and Antiques Roadshow or what, but they seem to be willing to pay top dollar and then some for stuff that seems like it shouldn’t be worth anything at all.

This was also an opportunity for me to check out Weird Stuff Antiques, which is a store located in there that I’ve heard about for awhile. Parked out front was a ’66 Cadillac that definitely lived up to the name weird. This thing was actually covered in orange carpeting, and decked out in horns ranging from trumpet to bull. It emitted an odor that was quite, um, memorable. I just wish I could pass it along to you in the pictures.

You can see most of this stuff by putting 1200 West 12th Street in your GPS (that’s the address for a place called “Stuffology,” but it’ll put you right there with the rest of it), then finding a place to park. Most of them are only open on the first weekends of the month, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. So head down next month, exercise a little patience, and have fun. Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s something to do.

In the meantime, I found a few car things to take pictures of, which, as usual, I’m sharing with you in the slideshow below.

Or, see a little bit better pictures at this link.


  1. NICE photo gallery . . . You've been on a roll lately. Keep up the EXCELLENT work!!!

  2. craig... you didn't by any chance note the price on that greyhound did you? my grandfather drove for them for forty years (accident-free). my brother has several scale greyhound busses. he might be interested in that emblem. thanks!