One of the best times to buy antiques is when there’s a depressed market. Even though Red Wing pottery generally holds its value pretty well, it’s no secret that there will be a lot of people looking for good deals and rare pieces at the Red Wing Collectors Society’s MidWinter GetTogether, slated for Friday, Feb. 6 to Sunday, Feb. 8 in Des Moines.

The Red Wing Collectors Society (RWCS) is the organization devoted to those who collect a diverse line of crocks, jugs, churns, dinnerware and art pottery manufactured in Red Wing from the 1880s to 1960s. Hundreds of people from around the country are expected to attend the February event, which serves as a precursor and helps tie collectors over until the annual national RWCS Convention in Red Wing in July. These two events serve as great opportunities for members to meet and learn about the history of the potteries that once operated in Red Wing, their diverse production lines and the impact they had on the American pottery industry.

Many attendees sell Red Wing wares from their hotel rooms during the MidWinter GetTogether, which is highlighted by organized activities including a reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 6. The theme of this year’s event is “Back to the 50s” and a “Crock Hop” will even be held during the reception. Educational sessions and KidsView activities will be held for members on Saturday, Feb. 7. The keynote presentation that morning will be given by Bob Kubes, fellow Red Wing collector and agent from the Musty Barnhart Agency, who will explain how to properly insure collections.

Other educational presentations will include Recent Pottery Dump Finds by Steve Showers, Intro to Dinnerware by Larry Roschen and Terry Moe, Red Wing Salt Glaze by Rick Natynski and a special guest presentation by Michael Smith, curator at the Iowa Historical Society Museum. Smith will discuss the Iowa Stoneware Exhibit that’s currently on display at the Des Moines museum.

A show and sale also runs from 1 to 4 p.m. on Feb. 7 followed by an auction at 6 p.m. – both of which are open to the public. Whether you’re new to collecting Red Wing or an experienced collector, there’s something for everyone at the MidWinter GetTogether.

All activities will be held at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites, 4800 Merle Hay Road, in Des Moines, Iowa. For more information on the MidWinter GetTogether, or the annual Red Wing Collectors Society Summer Convention, which is slated for July 9-11 in Red Wing, Minn., log on to

The Red Wing Collectors Society was founded in 1977 in Red Wing, Minn. and is devoted to educating people about all American pottery. There are more than 5,000 members worldwide. The Red Wing Potteries had diverse pottery lines that included stoneware, dinnerware and art pottery. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 800-977-7927, e-mail or log on to