Every year, our area celebrates a tourism event, Take a Break From the Interstate, that sends people down Route 21, the original Lakes to Florida highway. Yard sales line the route, and it has become a destination for people who love seeking antiques and bargains.
The Free Market is right on the route, and we have had to decide how we interface with it. Although it would be a good time to introduce lots of new people to our little shop, we decided to close during the event, because it wouldn’t be fair to compete with the yard sales by giving things away! We do let people use our parking lot to set up, and we ask for a small donation for that privilege. And we know that, as people close down their sales, our dock will be a dumping ground for what is left.
This is both a blessing and a curse. We scheduled a separate workday to deal with an enormous number of boxes of “stuff,” some of which had been damaged by rain. While 20-30% was deemed unsalvageable, we did have lots of items that went on the shelves for our customers. We do not accept clothing, and there were several bags of clothing ready to take to Alleghany Cares when we heard about a local clothing drive for a church in far Southwest Virginia. What serendipitous timing! We took the bags of clothing to the pick-up point for this one-time effort and were pleased that we could help.
Our volunteers work hard, not just when the shop is open but on workdays, too. If this is something you would like to be part of, please contact Kathy Cole at email@example.com and ask about joining us!