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Grant Park Antique Sale Review

By Jessica Williams
Despite the heat and early Saturday hour, people lined up around the block to sift through antiques and get a peek inside a piece of property they’ve seen boarded up for years. Community developer Green Stone Design recently purchased the historic home at 428 Woodward Avenue in Grant Park with plans to renovate and restore the fantastic property. Before this could happen, however, it had to be emptied of its contents—tons of wonderful antiques.
Maura Mitzner—owner and developer behind Green Stone Design—decided to sell the great items to the public; and after teaming up with local real estate specialists Red Robin Group, a plan to put on a community antique sale was conceived.
Appraisers were called out to evaluate the pieces; mailers were sent throughout Grant Park; signs were made; and friends and neighbors were called. Friends and neighbors, you did not disappoint, and above everything else, it was your participation that made the event proceed so well.
“It was such a great opportunity to meet new neighbors and to catch up with old friends. We were so pleased—it turned into a very exciting event,” says Mitzner.
Melissa Wakamo, owner of the Red Robin Group brokerage, couldn’t agree more: “Seeing everyone come out and come together was amazing. Being able to reconnect with our Grant Park neighbors over such an interesting event was really a great experience.”
The antique sale lasted from 9:00am until 4:00pm on Saturday, July 7. All day people perused through the home, milled about architectural antiques that were set out on the lawn, lingered on the crowded porch, and in general enjoyed each other’s company while picking through the relics.
“It was so interesting to hear how people planned on repurposing the architectural pieces, or how so many people planned to make art of their salvaged pieces,” says Mitzner.
Matt and Susan Wade, longtime residents of Grant Park, purchased two antique chairs for restoration and use. “Susan and I attended the sale mainly because we were curious to see the inside of the house. We really had no plans to buy anything,” Matt says. “Old furnishings, like old homes, have a story, a connection to the past and an allure to those willing to dig under the dust. There they were, almost side by side—a solid porch chair needing only a good coat of paint, and a beautiful, Craftsman-style oak rocker, missing one arm but the other intact for a pattern. We almost left without them, but in the end, we are both suckers for a project, especially bringing something old back to life. The chairs now have a new home in the ‘project’ corner of our garage.”
Everyone who purchased something had a plan for its new life.
Heather Stephens and Mike Devine recently purchased a fixer-upper down the street on Woodward and they’re in the process of renovating. They bought several architectural items to use in the restoration.
Another neighbor, Beverly Fetner, took home a large pile of old wood that she and her husband will use to replace and restore the trim throughout their historic home. “We bought a lot of wood,” Fetner says. “We lost our home to a fire 10 years ago,” she explains. Over the years, they have been salvaging, preparing and repurposing the wood to restore the trim in their home. “We’re trying to make the house look like it would have. So, this was a good find for us, getting that much wood.”
Gina Espinosa lives across the street from 428 Woodward Avenue. She and her husband purchased “a wonderful 19th century mantle that will replace the one we have in the living room. It will add character to our house,” she says. “It was very nice to see so many people that were interested in items for sale,” Espinosa continues. “Many of them are seeking to preserve the historic character of this neighborhood.”
The home at 428 Woodward will be wonderfully renovated and restored by Green Stone Design before being sold, and many Grant Park residents at the sale are excited about this development. “We are very happy about the restoration of the house. It’s a beautiful house, and it will be a great improvement to our street and the community,” says Espinosa.
“We gathered a lot of information about the house itself and who has done what to it over the years. Everyone is so excited to hear that it is going to be renovated and available for sale,” says Mitzner.
Many thanks again to all who spent their Saturday helping to make the Grant Park antique sale such a huge success. If you would like to share stories or pictures of how you’re repurposing your finds, Red Robin would love to hear from you at They’ll do their best to keep neighbors posted on the progress of the project at Completion of the renovation is slated for December 2012.

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