The Duncan Banner

Local News

March 27, 2011

Auto swap meet continues to grow in Duncan

DUNCAN — For five years, Zack Thornton has hosted an auto swap meet at the Stephens County Fair & Expo Center, and each year, for five years, that swap meet has grown exponentially.

“We probably grow 50 to 100 booths larger each year,” Thornton said. “This year we had between 80 and 90 more, so it’s growth, but you always wanna see more.”

Despite Thornton’s high goals, auto enthusiasts and vendors agree that the Stephens County auto swap meet is one of the better ones they get to attend.

Russ Root of Oklahoma City said he has been a friend of Thornton’s for several years and has come to the swap meet before.

“He’s really got a good setup here,” Root said. “There’s a good variety, a lot of different things to see and really the facilities are what set this place off from the others.

“The indoor facilities he has to use are huge for the guys who come to sell stuff, I mean that’s just major. It doesn’t even matter with this one if the weather’s bad or not, people can still come because a lot of it is indoors.”

One of the vendors utilizing the indoor facilities was Kevin Hammick of Duncan. Hammick, a firefighter by trade, also owns an upholstery and car shop outside of town. He said throughout the year, he will accumulate cars and many parts associated with them at his shop. Come swap meet time, he stakes out his claim and tries to sell what he can.

“I tried working outside those first couple years, but the weather really didn’t cooperate, so I asked to be moved inside,” Hammick said. “I’ve been here ever since.”

Hammick said he usually does pretty well at the swap meet and will even spend time roaming around the other vending spots.

“It’s a hobby of mine, I like to fix up cars, work on cars,” Hammick said. “It’s just a lot of fun.”

Root said aside from the facilities, one of the biggest items at the Stephens County auto swap meet is the amount of “barn cleaners” that come.

“All these guys, probably within 100 mile radius will clean out their barns or their garages and bring all those little things here to sell,” Root said. “You go the big shows in like Dallas or Austin, they have these huge vendors selling new parts and full cars, and that’s fine, but these guys that bring all the stuff from their barns and garages do real well. It’s something you don’t see offered at the bigger swap meets usually.”

The swap meet didn’t only feature car items though. Wes Rightmire, a.k.a. “The Bicycle Man” makes an appearance every year at the swap meet. Rightmire offers classic bicycles, bicycle parts and anything to go along.

“Classic cars and classic bicycles just go together,” Rightmire said. “A lot of these guys will have the classic cars, but not have the bikes to go with the cars.

“These were one of the biggest forms of transportation back in the 40s, 50s and 60s, so they’re just as much a part of this as the cars are.”

Rightmire, who owns a bike shop outside of Duncan said he goes to swap meets all over the country, including his biggest venture to Ann Arbor Mich.

“That’s probably the biggest one I do, but this is getting to be a big one too,” Rightmire said. “It’s probably bigger than the one in Chickasha now, and getting better.”

Thornton said everything he does couldn’t be possible without the help he receives from his friends, the people at the Stephens County Fair & Expo Center and all the vendors that come.

“Without them obviously, this wouldn’t be possible, and they show great support for me and this swap meet,” Thornton said. “I got started doing this by going to the swap meets with my dad and grandpa, and I guess it just gets in your blood and I really enjoy it.

“I just hope that this swap meet provides what people want and need and everyone has as good of a time as I do.”

Text Only
Local News
  • City Council Water rationing specter suddenly produces a crowd

    The Duncan Council met again on Tuesday, as it does twice a month, but there was something different about the latest gathering -- there were more than a handful of people in the audience.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Main Street Duncan receives praise, funding

    Civic leaders on Tuesday endorsed the role of Main Street Duncan in improving the city and urged the council to approve the annual $20,000 contribution it makes to the nonprofit organization.

    July 23, 2014

  • Marlow city council opens fourth firefighter position

    Jason McPherson, Marlow city administrator, announced Tuesday evening that the potential task force for the Marlow fire department did not come together as planned.

    July 23, 2014

  • Stephens County unemployment below the state average

    Oklahoma experienced one of the largest increases in employment in the country for the month of June. The state’s unemployment rate dropped to 4.5 percent, the lowest it has been in almost six years.

    July 23, 2014

  • Community Intervention Center faces budget cuts, layoffs

    While the Duncan Community Intervention Center faces a $126,476 budget reduction next year, it is only part of a $4,977,079 budget reduction by the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs.

    July 23, 2014

  • Library Teen Volunteers Library shows appreciation for teen volunteers

    To show her appreciation for her summer help, Duncan children’s librarian Darbie LaFontain headed a thank you party for the teen volunteers.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • School supplies to be given to Velma children

    Velma children may receive free school supplies thanks to the Velma Volunteer Fire Department and the Velma EMS.

    July 23, 2014

  • 7-22 mainstreet.jpg Most Main Street Duncan members haven’t paid dues

    The new executive director of Main Street Duncan has her work cut out for her.
    The nonprofit organization, designed to pump life into Duncan’s historic down, has collected only 40 percent of the dues it is owed for the past year, according to records.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-22 CTHC Drawing Class2 0288.jpg Phillips leads creative process through Heritage Center art class

    Brenda Phillips took her art knowledge and applied it to two groups Monday.
    Phillips, an art teacher at Duncan High School, led a drawing class Monday at the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center, teaching two groups, youths and adults, the basics of drawing. Phillips will continue the two-day class today.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-22 Douglass Pool2 0295.jpg Douglass Pool splash pad work underway

    Douglass Pool may be only about a month away from becoming a splash pad.
    On Monday, City of Duncan workers began breaking up the concrete making up the pool deck. Dana Stanley, parks and cemetery superintendent for the city, said he hopes the slash pad project will be completed by the end of August to allow it to be used before the season comes to an end.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos


Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

     View Results
AP Video
Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel