Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bidders get deals and nostalgia at Pier auction

ST. PETERSBURG — The majority of the 600 people who came to the Pier auction Tuesday were driven by cents on the dollar, not sentiment. The meat that still clung to the 40-year-old bones was picked clean by savvy business owners and resellers in less than eight hours.

From fire extinguishers and grill scrapers to tiki huts and cement trash cans, thousands of items were sold to the highest bidder.

"Think how many tomatoes it sliced for those 1905 salads," auctioneer Jimmy Sosnowski said as he took bids on a Wedgemaster vegetable slicer at the Columbia. It went for $25.

Restaurant owners showed up in force. They bought picnic tables for $100 to $200 and umbrellas for $20. Cha Cha Coconuts bar stools went for $30, while some of the Columbia's tables were $20 each.

Look for remnants from the Pier when you eat at any of the following: Stone Soup Cafe & Pub, St. Pete Brasserie, The Amsterdam in St. Petersburg, The Blues Ship Cafe in Ybor City, Nosh in Oldsmar, East Bay Golf Club in Largo, Hogan's Beach in Tampa and Beach Snoballs in Treasure Island.

Bargain hunters came from throughout Tampa Bay.

Don Ackerman was there with his pastor seeking deals for Calvary Tabernacle Church in Zephyrhills. They bought several concrete benches that lined the approach of the Pier for $70 each.

Andy Orfitelli will sell the glass display cases he nabbed for $50 each at the Airport Farmers' & Flea Market in Brooksville.

Mazen Fares of Ellenton got 24 leather wallets for $6 each. He's putting them on eBay.

Gary Griesinger bought elaborate crystal jewelry from the Glass Mirage for less than half the retail price for his girlfriend to sell at antique shows in Acadia.

Some shoppers, however, were clearly swayed by nostalgia. Though just two people bid on the Cha Cha Coconuts neon sign featuring a sunset and waves, that was all it took. They bandied the starting bid of $100 up to a final bid of $1,000 in a matter of seconds.

"I collect neon. I'll hang this on the wall. It represents St. Petersburg," Carolyn Wilburn said. She outbid Sue Peters, who had already bought a framed poster featuring the Pier and several restaurants for $450. Peters moved here just three weeks ago but was bidding for her daughter, a big fan of the Pier who was stuck at work in Tampa.

Jillian Cook got both a bargain and a keepsake. She bought a cobalt blue vase from the Glass Mirage for $25. The price tag read $199.

"It will make me think of my grandmother and all the years we came here together," she said. Cook recently took her grandmother to Jonny Reno's for her last Bloody Mary at the Pier.

The concierge desk was the biggest item sold.

"Anybody who has ever been to the Pier has walked right past this," said auctioneer Greg Farner, who did most of the quick talking for his Bay Area Auction Services.

The owners of Bringe Music on First Avenue North bought it for $300.

"We've been in business since 1956. It's time we got a new counter," co-owner Lynn Weigand said.

The 400-pound anchor that served as decor for Bay Breeze clothing shop will soon grace the parking lot of Clearwater Bait & Tackle.

"I saw that and I loved it," owner John Spence said. "Now I have to get it out of here."

All items must be picked up by 4 p.m. Thursday. That's the last time the public is allowed on the property.

Katherine Snow Smith can be contacted at (727) 893-8785 or kssmith@tampabay.com.

Bidders get deals and nostalgia at Pier auction 06/11/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 12, 2013 11:39am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. What to watch this weekend: 'GLOW,' second season of 'Preacher'

    Blogs

    Ready to rumble: GLOW

    Four words: Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. Yes, the fluorescent, body-slamming soap opera GLOW starring a cast of exaggerated characters is back, this time as a fictionalized Netflix series. Alison Brie (Community, Mad Men) stars as Ruth, a down-on-her-luck actor …

    Alison Brie, left, and Betty Gilpin in GLOW on Netflix.
  2. Exploratory Lab Boot Camp provides real-life technology training to students

    Science

    CLEARWATER — At this graduation ceremony featuring some of the brightest local minds in tech, it was the youngsters who stood out.

    Laszo Leedy, 17, a senior at Shorecrest Prep, presents part of his team's project for SPC's Exploratory Lab Boot Camp. Students presented their ideas at the end of the SPC Exploratory Lab Boot Camp. The program provides real-time business training to students. This year's graduation celebrated 15 students that finished the program. 
[JIM DAMASKE   |   Times]
  3. Editorial: Trump, not military, should set troop levels in Afghanistan

    Editorials

    There is no task more solemn for any American president than the decision to send troops off to war. In delegating authority over troops levels in Afghanistan to the Pentagon, President Donald Trump has shirked his obligation to own and defend his Afghan policy, while further divorcing America's military strategy there …

  4. North Korea says it's 'biggest victim' in U.S. student's death (w/video)

    World

    SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea on Friday called itself the "biggest victim" in the death of an American student who was detained for more than a year and died days after being released in a coma.

    Mourners line the street after the funeral of Otto Warmbier, Thursday, June 22, 2017, in Wyoming, Ohio. Warmbier, a 22-year-old University of Virginia undergraduate student who was sentenced in March 2016 to 15 years in prison with hard labor in North Korea, died this week, days after returning to the United States. [Associated Press]
  5. Kentucky recruit, former Tampa Catholic star Kevin Knox among top prospects for 2018 NBA Draft

    Preps

    Less than 24 hours after the NBA Draft, analysts have already begun looking ahead to 2018.

    Tampa Catholic star Kevin Knox finishes a layup during the McDonald's All-American game in March at the United Center in Chicago. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]