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Picking, collecting, rummaging, hoarding

The American Pickers are coming to Colorado. I don't know about you, but I'm excited.

I was kind of a picker when I was younger and had a few outbuildings to store stuff in. OK, I was a rummager and probably on the verge of being a hoarder.

Now, after moving from North Dakota to Alaska to Wyoming and finally to Colorado in four years, I've lightened my load a lot.

I used to go to garage sales every weekend, and sometimes I even had to get a trailer to pick up my finds.

I collected everything from old cameras and cake takers to ashtrays and picture frames.

I bought a gold dryer chair that worked and had an ashtray on the side of it with cigarette butts still in it. Took me forever to unload that precious find.

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I bought a dentist chair with an accompanying light that is probably an antique. It took a lot of muscle to get that chair into my truck but I did it. Boy did I get a dirty look from my husband when I got it home.

I also went to a lot of auction sales. At one sale they had a console stereo with a turntable and cassette player in it. I didn't really want it, but the auctioneer asked if I would bid 50 cents on it just to get the bidding going. Ended up with a console stereo for 50 cents. That started my collection of vinyl records.

During my obsession with rummage sales I was doing a weekly column for the Grand Forks Herald in Grand Forks, N.D., and sometimes I would write about my rummaging when I found something unique.

That turned in to a contest called Rummaging with Rona that was held in the spring. We would take five winners and a friend rummaging in a limo. We also had an entourage of tucks to haul our treasures around in. We started early in the morning and finished up with lunch at the Herald.

I have never had so much fun in my life. I only did it for two or three years, until I left the Herald, but I will never forget those days.

So, after lightening my load, I no longer have enough stuff for the American Pickers to go through. But if you are a collector in Colorado, you may want to contact them by email at AmericanPickers@cineflix.com or 1-855-OLD-RUST (653-7878).