Spring Yard Sale attracts hundreds of bargain hunters

by Kyle Reid

Local bargain hunters, antique collectors, and treasure seekers were once again eager to line-up outside Essex United Church on Friday morning in hopes of being the first to get their hands on a great deal during the church’s two-day Spring Yard Sale.

The traditional, bi-annual yard sale continues to appeal to the many thrifty shoppers in Essex and surrounding areas. At 8 a.m. on Friday morning, over 50 people lined up outside the doors of the church basement to get the first look at some of the second-hand treasures up for grabs.

“It filled up all the way around [the church],” volunteer Joan Macfarlane said on Saturday afternoon describing the event’s shopping peak after the crowd had died down. “We were shocked…and they all seemed to know where to head.”

The sale has become the biggest fundraiser to help with the costs of the operation and maintenance of the church. The fundraiser has become quite popular with local antique collectors looking for rare treasures, volunteers said.

“One man’s junk is another man’s treasure,” Macfarlane noted.

Traditionally, the church holds two sales, one in the fall and another in the spring. Both are well-attended, and the funds raised find their way back to the community through Essex United Church’s outreach programs. The church has been organizing the sales for over 35-years, by some estimates.

The Spring Yard Sale typically goes off without a hitch, but it takes a huge effort from church volunteers to organize the event. Some 14 people lent a hand setting up tables and items the Tuesday before the sale officially opened. On Friday, church volunteers organized a lunch for hungry shoppers and a table full of baked goods offered some sweet treats. A Christmas doll and picture were also raffled by church volunteers.  

But the sale couldn’t go ahead without a great amount of support from the local community. Church and community members donate all of the items that were available for purchase.

Church volunteers will take a little break before planning commences on organizing the traditional fall sale, which is expected to be held in September.