THOUSANDS of bargain hunters flocked to Castlemaine this weekend to rummage through the many treasures on offer at the Castlemaine Lions Club Swap Meet.
There were plenty of weird and wonderful items up for grabs with more than 600 stallholders from across the country on hand to show off their wares.
Proving the adage the early bird catches the worm, lots of enthusiasts lined the gates at Camp Reserve from 6am on Sunday to get a head start.
Mal Plummer from Axedale said the bargains were found first thing.
“We were there when the gates opened,” he said.
“This morning some of the traders wanted to sleep in so we beat them.
“We go every year.
“It is a good medium size swap meet, this year was good, there was a bit of stuff there, car stuff, bric-a-brac and memorabilia, so it was not too bad.
“I am always on the lookout for stuff, as I have some old cars and my girlfriend collects Shell memorabilia.”
Kyle Dekuijer, who was there with his partner, Steph, and children Charlie, 4, and Buddy, 1, said it was a great day for the whole family.
“I have been going every year since I was young; I used to go with my dad.
“It is the mystery, when you are searching for something.
“It hasn’t come through the last few years, what I am interested in is quite scarce, I collect things for 1930s Ford, but we picked up a few things for the house.
“The kids love it.
“We always have to buy a hot wheels car for my eldest son who is pretty insistent on finding the ultimate one; for $2 it makes him happy.”
Event organiser Ron Gartside said it was a big success.
“It was a good swap meet,” he said.
“The weather was great.
“There was a big crowd, which was really good.
“It was certainly comparable to last year which was fantastic.
“People say this is the one they love coming to. They really enjoy being here.
“All the money we raise is redistributed to the community."