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Antique transistor radio brings back memories of younger times
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Its a Batmobile displayed by Danny Boehme and Robert Bowman among the collectibles and thousands of Christmas decorations on sale in new showrooms at the Antique Warehouse on the Highway 99 frontage road in Salida. - photo by GLENN KAHL

It was a transistor radio I found – an early Christmas gift for me – at the Antique Warehouse in Salida.  A hand-held radio, it’s just what I had been looking for over the past few years from the ‘50s – and it works.

 I have got to admit I’m just a nut for listening to talk shows.  That interest or habit goes back to when I was in elementary school where there was a lot of required memorization for my daily classes.  It was the radio that made a difference, making it so much easier to recall and memorize what I was reading.  Sounds crazy but it worked – and it still works.

Back then as a kid it was anything but talk shows or even Gabriel Heater and the News at 6.  I remember being addicted to the likes of Captain Midnight, Red Ryder, Baby Snooks with Comedienne Fanny Brice and of course Dick Tracy.  It’s unbelieveable today how the dual concentration in my focus worked out so well with those 15 minute long shows.

The little, cream colored RCA product caught my eye when I walked into the spacious antique business with its some 80 vendors’ collections spotted easily from the lanes of Highway 99 located on the Frontage Road, south of Hammet Road.   Christmas was only on my mind because my assignment was actually to cover a 2,500 square foot area dedicated to yuletide collectibles and ornaments to be found in the rear of the store – filling up four rooms.

Dan Boehme had set up the spacious display areas with decorator Dodie Bettencourt.  Boehme’s excitement about his presentations is focused on what he sees as a perfect gift to fill any young boy’s dream of finding an electric motor powered “Batmobile” under the Christmas tree.

The ’92 version of the shiny black toy car that sold for about $1,000 was found at a garage sale, still in its original box.  Boehme said he had the joy of putting it together, buying a new NiCad battery and watching it start up and “speeding” off in his home, knowing it had never been driven before.  He is offering the “Batmobile” for sale at less than half its original retail price.

Boehme said he made many of his purchases from retailers around the valley at the end of last year’s Christmas season finding valuable items at giveaway prices, passing on savings to his customers this year at the back of the warehouse.

The entire antique operation can be very nostalgic seeing many items that were part of the fabric of the early 20th century, similar to what our grandparents valued in their lives.

The rooms of Christmas decorations opened to the public just last weekend and will continue to offer their unusual fare up until the December holiday.