By Joe Kirchmyer
Those of you who know me well know that some of my favorite interests and hobbies include writing, photography and collecting. While watching an especially interesting episode of American Pickers this week, I posted on Facebook that I’d love to expand upon those interests by exploring the amazing and the unusual, everything from interesting homes, buildings and barns to attics, cellars, garages and other places with a story to tell.
I’m not talking about the scripted exploration tours you see promoted around the city. I’m talking about the places that are typically off limits to the public. Places where you’re much better off skipping the dress shoes and business attire in favor of comfortable jeans and a pair of boots.
Much to my surprise, opportunities to explore the “odd & awesome” started to quickly roll in. Among the first to reach out was my friend Brian Hillery, a licensed Realtor with HUNT Real Estate. Brian has a listing for a huge early 1900’s barn on David Road in Aurora and offered to show me around. How could I say no?
This week I had a chance to explore the barn with Brian as my guide. While the barn was mostly empty and light was somewhat scarce, there were a couple of unusual finds, including a vintage kneeler that must have come out of an old church that reminded me of how, as Catholic school students many years ago, we would kneel at the altar to receive communion. How it ended up in an old barn is anyone’s guess.
While I didn’t get a shot of the kneeler, I was able to document the visit with a series of photos. I hope you enjoy this journey as much as I did. Feel free to check back often as there are other exciting tours in the works!
And if you have legal access to someplace that might be odd or awesome, feel free to reach out to me via my Facebook page.