‘Antiques Roadshow’ Is Coming to These 5 Cities in 2020. Here’s How You Can Get Tickets (and Be on the Show).

They come bearing old oil paintings, stacks of baseball cards, and vintage toys. They stand in line with 18th-century furniture, comic books, and musical instruments. Whatever they’ve brought with them, everyone who shows up at an Antiques Roadshow event is hoping that their dusty heirloom is actually a hidden treasure.  

man appraising a guitar on antiques roadshow
An appraiser examines a Les Paul guitar | Tracy A Woodward/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

It’s not a totally crazy idea. Over 500 episodes, the appraisers on the PBS show have surprised a few very lucky people with the news that their item is worth a lot of money. There was the college student who discovered the painting she’d inherited from her grandmother was worth $200,000 to $300,000. Or the Oklahoma man who learned that his collection of Chinese rhinoceros horn cups was valued at a cool $1 million. Of course, many people aren’t so lucky. Often, a person’s treasure has more sentimental value than it does financial. 

Still, the idea that you might have a goldmine tucked away in the attic is hard to resist. It’s no wonder that tickets for Antiques Roadshow events are a hot commodity. 

‘Antiques Roadshow’ will visit five cities in 2020 

Every year, the Antiques Roadshow team heads to a handful of U.S. cities to film new episodes. If you want to have an item appraised, you can enter a ticket lottery. If you win, you’ll get entry to the event, but that’s no guarantee you’ll be on the show. Only the items with the most compelling stories are selected for filmed segments. 

In 2020, Antiques Roadshow will visit the following five cities: 

  • Williamsburg, Virginia: Tuesday, April 28 
  • Nashville, Tennessee: Tuesday, May 12
  • Boston, Massachusetts: Monday, May 25
  • Estes Park, Colorado: Tuesday, June 9 
  • Santa Fe, New Mexico: Tuesday, June 16  

You have until February 19, 2020, to enter to win Antiques Roadshow tickets on the PBS website. If you’ve won tickets, you’ll be notified in early March. 

If you live near one of the upcoming Antiques Roadshow cities and have a unique piece of furniture you’d like appraised, you can also apply through the separate furniture submission process. A separate ticket giveaway also happens via social media

How to get on ‘Antiques Roadshow’

There are no hard-and-fast rules for getting on Antiques Roadshow. But there’s a better chance you’ll be featured if there’s something special about your item or its history, according to Mental Floss

Appraisers at the event look at every item that comes through the doors. If they see something they think would be good for the show, they let producers know. If the producer agrees, you’ll get to film an on-camera appraisal. About 100 appraisals are filmed at each event, but only about 60 make it to air.    

A high appraisal isn’t enough to make it on the show. Valuable items are sometimes passed over in favor of things that are worth relatively little but have more compelling stories.

Also, keep in mind that there are certain items — including many common collectibles — that appraisers won’t look at. These include vehicles, stamps, stock certificates, paper currency, coins, bicycles, tools, fossils, glass fire extinguishers, ammunition, and any hazardous materials.