Shipshewana Trading Place Celebrates a Century of Shopping Paradise in 2022 as Flea Market Season Kicks Off
The Shipshewana Trading Place Auction and Flea Market is a do-not-miss Hoosier tradition, located in Shipshewana, Indiana.
One of the initial attractions to this small, yet popular tourist town of 650 people has grown to a full-service destination that brings generations of families to take in the town’s Amish-based lifestyle.
Shipshewana, Ind. — It’s that time of year again to find the best bargains and treasure in Amish Country. The Shipshewana Flea Market will kick off the 2022 season on Tuesday, May 3rd.
Shipshewana Flea Market boasts nearly 700 spaces of vendors selling their wares on 40 acres.
“There’s so much to do here,” said Market Manager Michael Christner. “You can come to the flea market and spend the day shopping; you can bid at the Antique Auction and you can explore the town.”
The flea market is open 8 am to 4 pm on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, May through September, rain or shine with holiday hours on Memorial Day, Independence Day, and Labor Day. The market is also opening for their special weekend hours on June 17-18 and August 5-6.
The weekly antique & misc. auction is held each Wednesday, year-round inside the misc. & antique auction building. Special featured sales of toys, signs/advertising and the weekly sale of antiques, collectibles, architectural salvage, furniture, glass, primitives and more offer shoppers a plethora of items to bid on with the 6-10 auctioneers who sell simultaneously each Wednesday, all year long.
The Start of the Flea Market
The flea market and auction is located in Shipshewana, Indiana, a small, yet popular tourist town of 650 people. The area attracts generations of families to take in the town’s Amish-based lifestyle.
Shipshewana Trading Place, now one of the Midwest's most popular destinations, started in 1922 when six pigs, seven cows and several head of young cattle were sold at the home of George Curtis during the very first Shipshewana livestock auction. Business grew rapidly, so Curtis decided to build an auction barn at his home.
In 1947, Fred Lambright, who is the grandfather of Keith Lambright (current owner) purchased the auction. He built a new sale barn at the present location and put in a large scale to sell fat hogs and cattle by the pound. In those days, people would bring items to sell out of their car trunks, unofficially starting the Shipshewana flea market.
A roof was built for the flea market in 1947, though people continued to sell from their cars. In 1950, Lambright built a new Auction Restaurant, which could seat 50-60 people.
Shipshewana Trading Place Turns 100 Years Old in 2022
This season, Shipshewana Trading Place has a wide variety of activities going on as part of their 100th Birthday.
- Giveaways totaling over $10,000 - Daily drawings in the flea market where 2 (two) lucky shoppers each day will win one of two fantastic prizes valued at $100 of either an overnight stay to the beautiful Farmstead Inn & Conference Center or $100 in market cash good for shopping from the 700 vendors, food courts or restaurant & bakery.
- LMA (Livestock Marketing Association) World Livestock Auctioneer Championship – Since it all started with a livestock sale, they are proud to host the 2022 LMA World Championship. LMA proudly sponsors this event annually, bringing together North America’s top livestock auctioneers in a competition that showcases professionalism and promotes the auction method of marketing.
- A Variety of Events – In addition to their amazing shopping and lodging opportunities throughout the season, check out their website for other events as the details become available including special discounts, contests and other fun activities as they celebrate 100 years in business!
Shipshewana Trading Place: A Full-service Destination
The Farmstead Inn was built in 1997 to provide convenient and excellent lodging right across the street from the Auction and Flea Market. In 2003, a conference center was added to the Farmstead to accomodate retreats, conventions, banquets and meetings.
Shipshewana Antique Markets began in the summer and still continue to be a popular event for antique lovers today. The Farmstead Expo Barn, a place to host special events and auctions. The Expo Barn is accompanied by the Farmstead Event Pavilion, built in 2012, which provides a farmer's market-type venue for shows, reunions and weddings.
For the RV-lover, the Shipshewana RV Park was added on the south side of the flea market grounds in 2008. In 2016, a state-of-the-art Shipshewana RV Service Center was built next to the park to provide top recreational vehicle services to industries, dealers and RV-owners and the park was expanded to host 165 RV Sites with full hook-ups and wi-fi.
What Visitors Can Expect Today
Now home of the Midwest's largest flea market, weekly antique, livestock and horse auctions, excellent lodging, delicious dining locations, gorgeous event facilities, craft & vintage shows, antique markets, and RV Park & Service Center, Shipshewana Trading Place is a must-stop when visiting Northern Indiana's Amish Country.
"We're proud of our rich heritage and community involvement since 1922. Our customers which include buyers, sellers, visitors, vendors, shoppers, and guests are the reason we have been around for a century. We wouldn't be what we are today without them" states Keith Lambright, current owner and operator.
As the business grows and evolves, visitors, buyers, and sellers can continue to expect top-notch efficient customer service along with a friendly smile.