Monday, August 10, 2015

Treasure Island Flea

It's funny how childhood memories can stick with you decades later. My grandpa loved a good bargain and as kids whenever we stayed with him we would undoubtedly spend our Sunday mornings driving to garage sales and attending flea markets. It made the holidays particularly entertaining since all of our gifts were a random collection of "treasures" he had found. He always wrapped our gifts in about 15 layers of newspaper and we would all get a good laugh as we spent forever just pealing them off to get to the gift.

Fast forward twenty years and I have to admit that the idea of a flea market does not hold much appeal for me. I prefer to browse through a curated selection of products opposed to searching for a gem among dozens if not hundreds of items that do not appeal to me. I think it was the word "flea" in the Treasure Island Flea that kept me at a distance all these years. The monthly event is in fact much closer in resemblance to an antique market and the small size makes it very manageable to tackle with kids. Plus the views of San Francisco are amazing!

Our trip was prompted by our recent backyard renovation (in which my husband and I spent months tearing everything out and then slowly putting it back together the way we wanted it). We had just enough left in our budget for a new outdoor dining table and I knew exactly what I was looking for. Probably five years ago, we were walking through another great antique fair in Alameda and we fell in love with the outdoor tables from one of the vendors. I had the tables tucked away in my mind all these years and was thrilled to finally have a home for one of the pieces. (side-note: If you have the better part of the day to explore, then the Alameda Point Antique Fair is a must visit!)

Taking in the view while we pick out our table.
We purchased a beautiful table within our first 15 minutes and then spent another hour perusing the stalls and finding a couple of great bargains. The Flea has a handful of food trucks and a grass area for picnicking, as well as a full bar serving up mixed drinks and beer. We brought our own picnic and let the kids run around on the grass before taking a short walk along the waterfront. The kids loved climbing on the rocks and watching for ducks bobbing in the water for food.

Overall, it was a day well spent and definitely worth a visit if you are looking for unique pieces at reasonable prices. Our dining table was delivered a few days later and now serves as a beautiful focal point in our backyard. It is honestly a treat to eat our meals at it.

Our first meal at our new table.

Do you have a favorite piece in your home that makes you smile every time you see it?

Details: Treasure Island is located at the midway point of the Bay Bridge. Coming from the city, there is no bridge toll, but coming from the East Bay you can expect to pay $6 toll. Admission is $3 for adults and children are free. Parking is also free! The Treasure Island Free is held on the last weekend of the month. Check here for updated schedules and details on live music performances.

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