Featured appraiser of the popular PBS program “Antiques Roadshow” Gary Piattoni visited with residents at The Stayton at Museum Way – a retirement community – as he inspected dozens of their treasured heirlooms and antiques. Piattoni’s eye for fine art, antiques and collectibles landed him on the renowned PBS television series in 1995. Piattoni has also made several appearances on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” over the course of his 25 years in the antique appraisal industry.
“It was an honor to host the very knowledgeable Gary Piattoni and give residents a chance to have their antiques, heirlooms and flea market finds assessed,” said Scott Polzin, executive director of The Stayton. “Piattoni captivated the audience at The Stayton with his vast expertise in the appraisal industry.”
According to Piattoni, his favorite part of the session – even more than discovering the value of items – was learning about the history behind family heirlooms and favorite treasures, along with taking questions from residents. In many cases, Piattoni only confirms what antique owners already suspect – that their ancestor’s prized possessions aren’t worth much money. But sometimes, Piattoni stumbles upon a piece that catches his attention.
Resident Cuba Web brought in a life-sized, hand-carved owl she and her husband discovered at a New England-area antique shop while on vacation in the 1980s. Web explained to Piattoni that her husband had noticed she was particularly fond of the owl, and surprised her with the gift as a Christmas present a few months after their trip. Piattoni also took notice of Web’s rare owl, and shared his findings with the audience.
“My beloved owl reached a new level of popularity!” said Web. “I believe my husband purchased the cross-eyed owl for $800 decades ago. The owl was sitting under the Christmas tree, wrapped in a box that resembled a chimney with Santa Clause sitting atop. Piattoni appraised my owl at $3,500, but I have no reason to sell him, especially now that I have this story to share.
Hosting educational and social events like this is important to the The Stayton, Fort Worth’s premier retirement community, as it subscribes to the Masterpiece Living® program philosophy, which embraces healthy living at any age and in all regards – physical, spiritual, social and mental.
“The value that Gary Piattoni assigned to the treasures turned out to be less important than the fact that everyone had a wonderful time meeting new friends, and perhaps learning a bit of history along the way,” said Polzin.