As many of you know, I collect soda cans. Not new soda cans, that would just be plain weird. Instead, I collect older soda cans, collectible cans, things of that nature. But what you may have not know about me, is that I also collect glasses. Not reading glasses, but drinking glasses. Again, mostly soda glasses, but I do have my fair share or beer glasses as well. For some reason, I love to be trapped in the past. Any thing that take me to my childhood, or before I love. Even stranger, I LOVE old soda memorabilia, but not like most collectors, who only purchase the Coke and Pepsi stuff you see on Pawn Stars. I like collecting from late 70's and up.
Finding old soda and beer drinking glasses can be tricky. I usually sleep in too late on the weekend to hit up yard sales, but there are always great alternatives to finding glassware. I tend to stay away from antique stores, because they tend to hike up their prices because they either, A. See an old logo on it, and assume it is worth more, or B. Know what the true value of the antique is and mark it up to its actual worth. So antique stores are out. So where do I go when I go on the hunt for my collection? I have a few places I go to. Salvation Army's I have had a great amount of success in finding old soda and beer glasses, same with weekend flea markets. But one of my favorite places to go when searching for old soda glasses is Merchants Village in Pittston.
The reason I love Merchants Village so much is because they aren't like usual flea markets in the area. They are open 7 days a week, and have great hours. Even better, if the seller isn't there, the store is still open! All thanks to this awesome bar code set up they have there, where you take the items you want to the register like any other store and check out there. Now back to soda glass collecting. Over the past few years,I have found myself spending a ton of money on glasses, especially when you start finding a lot in one place and you just want to buy them all. So a good strategy I have came up with is, before going into the store, have a set amount of what you are going to spend, on top of that, I have made a rule not to spend over 3 dollars on a glass. This helps my wallet out a ton.
So this morning I head over to Merchants Village with a budget of $22. So I walk in the old Pittston Wal Mart, and the first thing I see is this beauty!
In case your wondering what this magnificent thing is, allow me to explain. You pour your beer in the well, and then pour into your glass when you are out. What makes this so amazing is, it claims to be able to keep your beer cold AND there is a light in the well that illuminates your beer! It runs off of 4 D batteries, and is priced at $35! Seeing how my budget was at $22 , I had to put it down and keep moving forward.
So here is my second stop.
I spent a lot of time in this stand. Really looking at everything. Who ever stand this was, they obviously had a bar at their house or owned a bar at one time, because he had a lot of cool beer and soda signs. The first thing that caught my eye was this:
I saw this and my jaw dropped! Bud Dry! Are ya kidding me? A failed Bud beer of the 90's advertisement sat right in front of me, illuminating magnificently! However, it was priced at $45, over my budget and I continued to look in the stand. Then I found this!
A classic Pepsi clock! I'm in need of a new clock, and this would actually do well in my kitchen. Priced at $22, this is right on target, it is coming home with me! But then I discover tragic news. It is not battery operated, no, instead it needs to be plugged into the wall, and in my kitchen, I I plug anything in the socket where the clock would go, I blow the fuse. So I put it back on the shelf and cry a little inside.
While inside this same booth, I came across this nice little glass collection.
A collection of Chrysler glasses. I'm still kicking myself for not buying at least ONE of these glasses. They were nice, in good shape, I drive a Chrysler, but at $3 each, I passed. I'm still not sure why I turned it down, and to be honest, next time I go back, if they are there, I'm going to buy it. Side note, I have that sweet upside down 7up glass already in my collection, its actually one of my favorite glasses I own!
So I leave booth one disappointed that I found no treasures, but then I stumble across this booth!
As a glass collector, this is what I'm looking for! Someone who obviously, either collected glasses, or had a family member who worked for both Pepsi or Coke, maybe even a bar, and saved the glasses. All the glasses were reasonably priced, anywhere from $1 to $6. Again, I won't pay over $3 for a glass, unless its something really cool. And if your wondering, yes, I did buy a few glasses from this booth, but I'm saving my purchases till the end.
If you are looking to start collecting something, a big tip I can give you, is that when you go to places like this, really search the shelves, inside and out. Look behind and under thing because you never know, if someone picked something up and put it some where else. For example:
When I'm on the hunt for soda cans, a great place to look is in old beer can collections. Apparently I'm not the only person who collects cans, and a lot of people collect beer cans. I have found some "gems" mixed in beer can collections, that someone missed. Unfortunately today, there was no good cans, but I did get to see some awesome old beer cans.
This was my last stop for the day:
This guy had a lot of stuff jammed into a little area, and I almost missed an awesome glass set, but because I got down and checked a bottom shelf, and moved some things out of the way, I was able to find an awesome glass set.
Now onto my purchases for the day with prices!
Its hard to see but its a Moose Head Light Beer glass. Priced at $2.50 I almost walked away, but then I realized it lights up when you pick it up! How could I say no?
Next is a classic coke glass. Usually I don't buy coke glasses, mainly because they have kept their logo the same, and to be honest I really don't care for it, but the other side I like for some reason so I bought it for $1.
Next up was this sweet Camel Mug:
I wasn't going to pick this one up till I saw the other side:
When A glass has an exact date on it like this, I find the glass now has more meaning, almost like its own back story. It was $2 so I figured why not.
I love the Pepsi font on this glass! It is the same font and logo from my childhood. I wasn't crazy about Santa on it, but for 41 I figured it would be ok in the collection.
Some of you may remember the old 90's Pepsi commercial with Ray Charles singing about diet Pepsi, well thats the deal with this glass! It has the main chorus printed right on it, even better it was a buck! Even Better it had this in it!
This next set of glasses were too good to pass up. I'm a sucker for local history, and these glasses blew my mind!
There are six of them, all front pages of various Scranton newspapers, with headlines from major events in our past. The whole set was $7, which was fair because I got all of them. I was pretty happy with this grab.
Now this glass I broke my rule of not going over $4. In fact this glass was the reason I didn't get the Chrysler glass. I'm still debating this one:
I have NEVER seen a TAB glass, ever! It is a diet soda, and the way the glass is made, its to resemble a waist losing weight. Again, $4 is a bit high, but I think it was worth it.
I'm a HUGE sucker for Spuds Mckenzie! I feel in love with the Bud Light dog when I was about 5 and never looked back. Coming across his merchandise is some what difficult, but when I do, I jump at the chance.
It was $2 and it is now my second Spuds glass, but my first beer mug! I was very happy about this purchase. With that being said that is what I got today from Merchants Village for $22. But that's not all! This weekend, my girlfriend and I went there to walk around and waste some time. While we were there I bought three awesome glasses as well!
I always like a 7up glass, because they always seem to be old looking, and this one was in mint condition and only $1!
Here is a brand of soda that is always hard to find a glass for, Mountain Dew. I really like this one, because it is before Mountain Dew decided to be all "edgy". Not only that but there is basketballs all over it, and the best part...the soda stops at the brim of the net! I paid $2 for this one.
And finally, my favorite soda glass in the entire collection yet.
It doesn't get any better than this! There are a few things to look at with this glass. First, the old school logo wrapping around the glass. It screams late 80's early 90's. Next, its diet Pepsi, so why not put it in a slimming glass? Also notice the one calorie at the top! And if your wondering, yes, it does fit an entire glass of Pepsi in it! I paid $2 for this one as well.
And before we left, this incredible figure caught my eye!
I couldn't believe it! This figure goes any where from $100 -$200 on ebay. It was in mint condition, and still in the box for $12! My girlfriend bought it for me as a gift, and I ripped the box open, and it sits on my desk proudly displayed!