Busy opening weekend at Olde Hadley Flea Market

The flea market started over 30 years ago

HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP) – The Olde Hadley Flea Market opened for the season Sunday.

Emma Hudgik of Hadley said, “It’s always hectic, busy, the towns always scurrying with lots of new people. It’s good, it’s beautiful, sunny, seventy degrees.”

Over the years, the flea market has been taking place every Sunday starting mid-April on Lawrence Plain Road.

Treasure hunters, collectors, antiquers, they come from all over to sift through the merchandise. And the age group ranges.

Brian Reynolds from Norwich, Connecticut told 22News, “You never know what you just might find out there you know from your youth when you were a kid. I happened to find this fire truck which I had when I was about nine years old and it was perfect.”

Ray Szala started the flea market over 30 years ago on property that had been used for farming. “We started with eight dealers. How many now? Well there might be 150 out here.”

Some, like Donald Hass of South Hadley, are longtime merchants. “I’ve been on this field in this spot for thirty years now.”

But with good weather and the popularity of the event growing, there was at least one issue: traffic. Sgt. Mitchell Kuc from the Hadley Police Department told 22News, “We had a lot of traffic complaints with regards to the traffic stopped, we had reports of 30 to 40 minutes of traffic two to three miles backup.”

Hadley Police said that reconstruction on the Fort River Bridge also tied up traffic more than usual, but they asked the MassDOT to adjust the traffic light ahead of time.

For those searching for a bargain on a good day, it was worth the wait. Hudgik said, “First time and it’s beautiful today, so I’m looking for level books and antiques. A bit of a history nut for as young as I am but.”

Police say if you aren’t going to the flea market and you can avoid Route 47 South on a Sunday, you should do so.

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