American Pickers stars collect stories at Syracuse Nationals

Mike Wolfe of â??American Pickersâ??

For every item in a collection, there is a story explaining how it got there. That's one of the reasons History Channel star Mike Wolfe of "American Pickers" visited the Nationals Car Show.

"It's cool talking to people. When you start talking to them about their cars and their face lights up, it's contagious," he says. Wolfe says he loves talking to people about their collections, whatever it is that they're passionate about. He says unique stories, the history behind the item, and the characters sharing the stories all contribute to what makes "American Pickers" so memorable.

Wolfe signed autographs, and chatted with fans Friday morning at the Center of Progress Building at the State Fairgrounds in Geddes.

"I'm at the Syracuse Nationals because everybody wants to be here. Everybody's heard of this car show, you guys are doing something right," he says. "Like anything that's transportation related, when you're a collector, you want to be around other collectors. Everybody wants to talk shop, which is very cool," says Wolfe.

Wolfe says he's found several unique items across Upstate New York, even before the show took off.

A motorcycle collector himself, one of his most memorable "picks" was a 1913 Harley from Ovid, in Seneca County.

He also has fond memories of Dansville in Livingston County. Wolfe has also found many aviation-related items from Hammondsport in Steuben County, where Glenn Hammond Curtiss' roots are tied. Curtiss is known as the Father of Naval Aviation.

If you couldn't make it to the Nationals Show Friday, but are planning to go this weekend, you have a chance to meet the woman who runs the store seen on "American Pickers." Danielle Colby-Cushman will mingle with fans in the Center of Progress Building from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday.

Mike and Danielle will be back next month appraising items at the State Fair as part of the free Midway Series.