The Phantom Woodworking Show

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Blog entry by Kerry Drake posted 02-22-2010 06:50 PM 1379 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Saturday my wife and I got up early (for us, on a Saturday) and hit the road to drive down to Marlborough, Massachusetts to attend a woodworking show I had found online a few weeks ago. We made the 86 miles drive in bright sunshine and good spirits, arriving at our destination 10 minutes before the show was scheduled to start that day (the website advertising a 3 day event, Fri – Sun).

Imagine our surprise to show up and find an empty … nay, a desolately deserted … parking lot (I mean this was just a tumble-weed away from spooky). The event center was associated with a hotel set in the same complex so we drove up to the hotel and found out, sure enough, no woodworking show. The hotel told us the show had moved to Connecticut this year and we were the 5th person they had turned away so far.

I later sent an e-mail to the publishers of the website and they responded with an appology, wanting to know how I had come across that page as it was just a test page. My responce: “google”. They did get my address and are supposed to sending me tickets to the “Big E”, witch is a big show in Boston every January.

Not to be denied my woodworking fix, I grabbed my GPS unit and pulled up the address for the local Rockler store. That worked out kind of nice as I had not been there before (I have a Rockler and a Woodcraft within an hour of my house). So we got to roam around the Rockler for a while and walked out happy, but poorer. At least I got some change.

But I got some neat stuff:

Bench Cookies

Pocket Hole Clamp

Kreg Corner Clamp

Incra Micro T

Rockler Shop Apron

Corner Curve Templates

-- Kerry Drake, Loudon NH,

12 comments so far

View christherookie's profile


70 posts in 3043 days

#1 posted 02-22-2010 06:56 PM

That’s got to hurt. I pictured tumble-weeds blowing through the parking lot.

View Rustic's profile


3253 posts in 3593 days

#2 posted 02-22-2010 06:57 PM

That sucks. but nice score

--, Rick Kruse, Grand Rapids, MI

View ellen35's profile


2738 posts in 3429 days

#3 posted 02-22-2010 08:05 PM

When life gives you lemons… make lemonaide!
When the show moves… go to Rockler!
Nice recovery!

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View BOB67CAM's profile


269 posts in 3068 days

#4 posted 02-22-2010 08:42 PM

i seem to end up at rockler way more then id like and its usually the same scenario, i go there planning on about 40-50 bux and walk out 200 later
i really dislike the extra they add to the prices but the sad fact is they seem to have EVERYTHING youll ever need, well i guess they need a hotdog stand or something

-- if you dont have it, build it, especially when its a stupid idea

View RalphNevin's profile


71 posts in 3028 days

#5 posted 02-22-2010 08:49 PM

WOW, I almsot went to that show (or not). I even had it scheduled on my Outlook. Good thing I decided to work on painting my workshop instead. Looks like I save myself almost $200.00. Nice toys!!!

-- Ralph New Hampshire,

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3305 days

#6 posted 02-23-2010 01:43 AM

Never seems to be any woodworking shows in my neck of the woods. No Rockler oe other woodwworking stores either. I would gladly drive (well, a short drive anyhoo) to a woodworking show or good woodworking store.

View Lupo's profile


206 posts in 3019 days

#7 posted 02-23-2010 01:52 AM

Thats my Home Town!!!!!! Figures. It sounds like you made the best of it anyway!

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 3427 days

#8 posted 02-23-2010 07:32 AM

Glad you got to SPEND some time around wood, even if you did miss the show. Rockler is dangerouse for me. If I bring anything else home, the wife will brain me. haha

Nice story.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View poopiekat's profile


4355 posts in 3731 days

#9 posted 02-24-2010 01:29 AM

Having lived in NH and Maine for a long time, I knew that no trip to mid-Massachusetts was complete without a stop at “Spag’s”....a discount house in I believe, Shrewsbury MA on Rt 9. They had one complete building dedicated to awesome woodworking tools and stuff. They were there for years, but it’s been a decade since I’ve been out there, so I don’t know the present status. They had all the usual stuff, and some really weird stuff like Delta shaper cutters and some amazing deals on power tools, in fact I bought a Delta table-top jointer there for $99. Yeah, the crappy one with the screamer motor, but I always managed to spend a bankroll whenever I visited. Anyone know if the place is still there? I remember hearing ol’ Spag himself died some time ago, a real rags to riches story.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View Karson's profile


35120 posts in 4397 days

#10 posted 02-24-2010 04:29 AM

A winning day never the less.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View Kerry Drake's profile

Kerry Drake

167 posts in 3017 days

#11 posted 02-24-2010 04:13 PM

Spags sold out to Building 19 after Mr. Spags died. His daughters ran it for a little while, but then sold.

-- Kerry Drake, Loudon NH,

View poopiekat's profile


4355 posts in 3731 days

#12 posted 02-25-2010 02:31 AM

Thanks, Kerry!
I used to live in Allenstown (Suncook) New Hampshire, and moved away about the time the NASCAR track was built in your town. Is the motorcycle track still there? Driving through Concord from the coast recently, I almost got lost, it’s all so built-up now. Thanks for the update on Spag’s, sad to see another New England icon fade to history. Same with Woodworker’s Warehouse” which used to be everywhere in NH. I need to go to the Shaker colony up rt 132 just one more time in my life. Hope that hasn’t been converted to condos yet…

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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