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Sunny days here again for garage salers

Stored under In the News on January 24, 2008 at 8:03 AM
The sun came out. It warmed up. And I think I even heard some birds singing, or maybe that was me humming a happy tune.

The first Saturday in January rang in the first good day for garage saling following a bit of a dry spell. I'm grateful for the rain. But it sure can dampen the spirits of garage-sale lovers.

"It really irritated me because there weren't enough sales," said avid garage saler Robin Johnson of Mesa.

That's right, treasure hunters like Robin and I just went through a really rough period - you might call it a bit of a garage-sale drought. Thanks to miserable conditions three weekends in a row with cold, wet, windy weather - and then the holidays - garage sales seemed to evaporate in the Valley.

But aahhh . . . January would bring mild conditions and, as a result, an abundance of sellers and buyers.

"I've never seen anything like it. It's been a hoot," said Gina Simpson, who along with a friend was holding a garage sale in Gilbert.

When I pulled up to their sale, I couldn't believe my eyes. There were nearly 50 people gathered in the tiny front yard picking through boxes and looking at furniture. That's a lot of folks because typically, I might see a dozen or so shoppers at an average sale.

"We were planning on doing this several weekends ago but the rain caused us to cancel it. So, we've been ready to get rid of this stuff," Gina told me in between making change for customers. They made nearly $500 in just four hours and sold almost everything.

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How to throw a successful garage sale

Stored under In the News on January 17, 2008 at 9:17 AM
Is your home overrun with unwanted knickknacks, unplayed games and unworn clothes? Before you start chucking things, why not throw a garage sale? Garage sales are a fun, economical way to cut down on clutter. They can even net you some cash when they're organized effectively.

Here are some tips for throwing a low-hassle, high-profit garage sale:

Ask neighbors to join in. When it comes to garage sales, the axiom "the more the merrier" holds true. The more browse-worthy stuff on display at the sale, the easier it is to draw in buyers.

Select sales items carefully. Whatever you're trying to sell, you have a much better chance of selling it if it's clean, particularly when it comes to clothes.

Group objects by type and display them on clean, sturdy surfaces. If you're selling smaller items, like hair clips or costume jewelry, consider grouping them in plastic bags.

Tag everything with a suggested price. It helps to minimize confusion and discourage prolonged negotiations.

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Garage sale offers loads of bargains

Stored under In the News on January 10, 2008 at 7:41 AM
By mid-morning, the jumbo-sized garage sale filled with hundreds of vendors and bargain hunters trying to strike deals on trinkets pulled out from the backs of closets, precious antiques saved for years, marbles, DVDs, houseplants, records and all the other staples of the home marketplace.

For many who came Saturday, the ninth annual "World's Greatest Garage Sale" at the Monroe County Fair & Expo Center in Henrietta, was a gigantic treasure box to dig through.

"This is the thing I get excited about all year," said Fran Lander, of Le Roy, Genesee County. "We make sure we come every year."

This year, Lander had come in search of a glass teapot and didn't find it. "But I found everything else," she said, leaning up against a cart filled with pillows, clocks, baskets and other odds and ends.

In another corner, Greece resident Josiane Laloggia scanned over painted dishes and mirrored vanity sets — "just to see if I can't find some good deals," she said. Already, she'd purchased a Gorham crystal ball for $2.

"And you can't beat that," chimed in sister-in-law Janice Laloggia of Fairport.

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Dallas may soon require garage sale registration

Stored under In the News on December 27, 2007 at 7:10 AM
Dallas residents may soon have to register with the city before holding a garage sale at home under a proposal being considered by officials.

Dallas city policy currently allows residents to hold two garage sales at their homes per year. Each sale can each be up to three days in a row.

But Mayor Pro Tem Elba Garcia said too many residents are abusing the system, causing traffic problems and disrupting neighborhoods with frequent sales.

Dr. Garcia said it's not uncommon to see people virtually running businesses by selling new merchandise from their homes or from empty lots.

Some offenders, she said, have been documented using department store-quality clothes racks to sell used apparel.

"It's resale, not a garage sale," Dr. Garcia said of the illegal home-based enterprises.

Both Dr. Garcia and employees of the city's Code Compliance office are analyzing proposals to change Dallas' garage sale ordinance to require residents to register with the city before each sale.

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Wise antique buyer works garage sales

Stored under In the News on December 20, 2007 at 6:38 AM
When Steve Segner goes to a garage sale, he doesn't pinch pennies. "Like that table over there. I paid $1,200 for it. But it's a Stickley so it was a real deal."

Steve owns and operates a quaint and cozy adobe-style hotel in Sedona with his wife, Connie. It's a small place, with only 12 rooms, but it's extremely well-appointed with top-notch furnishings and accessories. I could tell, however, these things - with their unique patina and historic character - couldn't be recent store purchases. There was clearly more adventure involved in acquiring these treasures.

My husband and I went to Sedona for a bit of hiking, relaxation and, yes, garage saling. I chose the El Portal Hotel, not knowing the owner was an avid garage saler.

I sauntered into the hotel lobby with its stone fireplace and interesting accessories just before dawn in search of my first cup of coffee when I spotted Steve reading the paper. I just had to know.

"Do you garage sale?"

"Oh, yes. Just about everything you see in this hotel comes from garage sales and flea markets," he told me enthusiastically. I knew it!

We shared stories of our favorite finds - mine is a 7-foot-tall iron candelabrum I got at a garage sale in Scottsdale for $10. Steve's favorite finds involve more money . . . a lot more. He knows quality when he sees it and isn't afraid to spend hundreds, sometimes thousands, on rare finds.

The native Californian has worked long hours in various ventures - including the newspaper and pet-food industries - but would always make time to go to garage sales. He bought so much, in fact, he had to buy a warehouse in which to store everything. "We collect and collect. And friends would come over to the house and say, 'You know, you have 14 lamps in your living room. So, we had our stuff everywhere."

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Fake $50 a garage sale killjoy

Stored under In the News on December 6, 2007 at 7:01 AM
Clay and Mae Cowgill were eager to earn some extra cash from their clutter. They were having a huge garage sale at their Gilbert home, selling a "collection of stuff from over the years."

Business was great on Friday. They unloaded more than half their items. Saturday was slower but it was still action-packed. Something the Cowgills could've done without.

It was early in the day when a Grinch stopped by. It happened during a busy time, when at least four cars with buyers had stopped at the same time.

"Folks were asking lots of questions and my wife was making change," Clay said. "We were swamped." That's when another woman asked Mae if she could break a $50 bill.

Clay piped in his opinion: "I told the woman it depended on how much she bought. And she turned around and grabbed something right beside her and said, 'How about this?' " The woman picked up a few craft items totaling $9. Clay gave her the change and she and her male companion left.

All seemed well until it came time to count the money. The Cowgills noticed that $50 bill didn't look quite right.

"The front side looked fine but the back looked kind of funny," Clay said. "So, we went over to the bank and they verified that it was a counterfeit . . . and a pretty good one."

Turns out the bill was slightly smaller than regular U.S. currency and an identifying watermark was missing. So, the criminals paid with a fake 50 and made away with $41 of Clay's real money.

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Shopping for a bargain is almost too easy

Stored under In the News on November 29, 2007 at 7:28 AM
HOW MUCH IS that doggy in the window?

Well, there is a posted price -- but there's also a sale on, we've got this coupon from the paper, and we've got a store loyalty card and a frequentbuyer punch card, and using this credit card gives us a discount, except that they say they honor competitor's coupons and we've got one of those, but they also will beat any competitor's price and we've got an ad, but then again they might be having an even better deal next week, and won't we feel foolish paying more, so maybe we should ask what kind of deal they can do for us ...

Welcome to the retail pricing game, circa 2007.

It's a game -- or maybe contest of wills is the better description for it -- that neither retailer nor consumer claims to enjoy playing. Every year, though, both play it ever more enthusiastically, or desperately, as though neither can escape it.

Retailers could get out of this if they wanted to. Just declare a basic price, stick to it, avoid the increasingly complicated discount schemes and hold sales so occasionally that they're actually special events when they occur.

But then ... who wants to run the risk of chasing away potential customers who have been conditioned to expect some sort of discount all day every day -- especially in such a dodgy economic climate?

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Garage sale purchase of a $10 Cruet Set turns into sale of $850 antique.

Stored under In the News on November 15, 2007 at 7:33 AM
Just imagine how ecstatic Marla Stickland was when the tarnished and dusty little Huilier (Cruet Set) she picked up for a mere $10 at a neighborhood garage sale, turned out to be an important antique. She had no idea that such a dull looking item, when cleaned revealed a maker's mark and a bunch of other symbols that once deciphered by, turned into a sale of $850.

Not only were these marks totally nonsensical to her at the time, but they were dispersed throughout the piece. They were interspersed at various parts of the underside, and looked like initials with a flower, a woman's head, a bearded man's face and other strange looking ciphers. The first thing Marla thought was to use Google and search for all these symbols. But how do you even begin describing all these little images using words and terms, most of which can only be communicated using convoluted and long sentences? She was stuck.

After spending countless frustrating hours On-line, but driven by her intuition that there must be a story in these silver marks, she stumbled upon She knew that her cruet set was made mostly of silver, so she thought "if I could at least identify the silver marks, I may have a starting point for more research...". She was right! displays all antiques marks in shape categories. So, if a mark looks like a ship, then all marks that look like a ship or a boat, are displayed on one page. If a mark looks like a crown, all marks that look like a crown are listed on one page. The same with animals, flowers, crests, letters and a number of other shape categories. This pictorial method makes it easy to find antiques marks by just looking at images and comparing them.

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Garage Sale Gal: Someone doesn't like garage sales?

Stored under In the News on November 8, 2007 at 7:11 AM
I'm offended. I'm hurt. (Excuse me while I dry my eyes.)

Deep breath. OK. I can talk now.

I love writing these columns on garage sales and I'm thrilled The Republic prints them each Friday. But I gotta tell you I'm appalled, outright disgusted, by a column one of The Republic's community editions published recently. Gosh, I just don't know how it made it past the editors.

It ran a couple weeks ago in The Chandler Republic titled, "If it's Saturday, it must be a garage sale." The author was Andrew Schwartzberg - a garage sale . . . (sob) ... hater.

Some excerpts: "There is something about garage sales I find just a little bit unsettling. . . . Somehow the notion of paying money for somebody else's junk just doesn't sit well with me. . . . And what of the person whose stuff you're going through? Are they selling you items contaminated with bubonic plague? . . . Creepy."

OK, OK, so the humor columnist doesn't like garage sales. We get it. But, hey, Andrew, I've been there, too. I was once a garage-sale snob. I was reformed, however, when I went to my first sale and bought an old copper boiler. I love that thing. So, Andrew, if you want to experience the "high" of finding a great treasure for mere pennies, I offer some advice for battling your troubling phobia:

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Desperate housewife meets guardian angel at yard sale

Stored under In the News on November 1, 2007 at 8:55 AM
DEAR ABBY: I have enjoyed reading the occasional letters people write you about the acts of kindness they have experienced. I would like to share one that happened to me.

About a year ago my husband left me. Shortly afterward, I learned that he had embezzled funds from work, been fired from his job, and that our home was in foreclosure and the utility bills had not been paid.

I had been an agoraphobic housewife for years. In a panic for funds, I held a yard sale. That weekend I met quite a few of my neighbors and, in the course of the day, we shared stories of marriages gone wrong. I received many words of encouragement, even as I watched my beloved possessions carted away for a pittance. But the most amazing thing happened that day. A woman I'd never met before came back after the sale, handed me an envelope and left. Inside was $200. I cried like a baby.

Since then, I have overcome my agoraphobia, found a job and an apartment, and have begun the long process of rebuilding my life. I have no way to find that angel to thank her, but I'm hoping she reads this letter and knows that through her act of faith and love she helped me to achieve independence. You are, indeed, an angel, mystery woman! -- MS. B. FROM HORN LAKE, MISS.

DEAR MS. B.: The kind of empathy you described is usually demonstrated by someone who has experienced a similar kind of pain. Doing a good deed for someone in need can be an empowering act -- not only for the receiver but also for the doer. Sometime in the future, you will meet a person who needs a helping hand -- and when you do, you'll pass her good deed along and be a "guardian angel," too.

[News Story]

Garage sale weekend

Stored under In the News on October 18, 2007 at 8:36 AM
This last Saturday I had my annual garage sale to get rid of everything I had previously bought at other garage sales or clothing and articles that the family deemed unwanted. I don’t hold them more often because of the work involved in getting ready for one. Washing clothes, making signs, dusting off that old antique couch that we were going to re-upholster one day -- it takes an effort to hold a successful garage sale.

I also don't have them more often because my husband would have a heart attack if I were to more frequently put him through the torture of seeing perfectly good clothing that my daughters decide they don’t want anymore.

It pains him to see these things being sold for pennies on the dollar that we originally paid for. He relives with each sale the fact that at the time life couldn’t go on for my daughters if they didn’t have that new blouse or purse.
Actually, my son did some torturing of his own this time around as he put some of his video games up for sale because he grew bored of them. It didn’t help the matter any that he went out later that evening and bought another game with the earnings from his sale.

We also sold a few bikes that were used a few times but mostly sat collecting dust in storage. It was an unsuccessful attempt at exercising as a family that lasted all of one week. I hope at least that the people who bought them will actually ride them.

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Osbournes hold $1 million garage sale

Stored under In the News on October 11, 2007 at 8:07 AM
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Celebrity rock couple Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne, facing a new life as "empty nesters" with their children off on their own, are holding a $1 million garage sale to clean out some of their rather upscale clutter.

More than 600 lots of memorabilia, jewelry, costumes, paintings, and furniture from their Gothic-style house in Beverly Hills, their Malibu home and their British mansion in Buckinghamshire will be auctioned on November 30 and December 1.

The sale, to raise funds for the Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Foundation, includes a gilded Buddha statue, a walnut parquetry inlaid games table, and the couple's Louis XVI-style master bedroom set.

But it also includes such items as a pair of Ozzy's trademark sunglasses, the all-terrain vehicle he was seriously injured while riding in 2003, his son Jack's black leather bed, and gowns worn by Sharon and their daughter, Kelly.

The two younger siblings launched their own showbiz careers from the MTV reality show about the family called "The Osbournes." The eldest daughter, Aimee, refused to take part.

Sharon Osbourne said it had taken her and Ozzy, who married 25 years ago and are listed as one of Britain's richest couples, nearly a lifetime to collect all of these items.

"Both Ozzy and I have very special memories of each and every item ... It is like giving up a part of us, and we hope each and every item finds a very special home," she said in a statement.

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Bargain hunters find bonanza waiting for them in community's garages

Stored under In the News on October 4, 2007 at 8:02 AM

Ask Felix who had the best garage sale in town Saturday, and he would have pointed his tail at Kim Brown's house in The Lake subdivision.

The curious cat, who Brown admitted had used up seven of his nine lives, paced up and down the cool cement garage floor as he helped shoppers pick out clothes for their toddlers.

Coordinating the sale with her daughter Aimee Hamilton, Brown said early Saturday that sales had been brisk since the pair opened the garage door for business a mere 36 hours before.

"The pile was three times as high on Thursday," said Brown, pointing to the rows of clothes neatly arranged by size and gender on long tables. A family could walk in, outfit their youngster and be on their way in just a few minutes. "We have five kids in the family that are 8 years old and younger, so we have a lot of kids' clothes."

Brown, who has participated in the citywide garage sale for five of the last six years, recognizes many of her repeat customers.

"I didn't have a sale last year, and one woman came by and cried. She said I had been outfitting her children for the past few years," Brown reflected, as she ran her fingers down the spine of her black-and-white family cat.

Mary Bauercamper examined a pile of girls' clothing while her husband, Scott, held their baby daughter Emma against his shoulder.

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It will be a long winter without garage sales

Stored under In the News on September 27, 2007 at 7:37 AM
I always get a little melancholy at this time of year. Fall is beautiful, of course, but it's also a bit sad. I guess that's because in many ways it's an ending, as the vibrancy and life of spring and summer shuts down for the winter.

The signs of the season are everywhere. The mercury dips below zero, leaves change colour, plants start to brown and wilt. After struggling for its life all summer, my poor little tomato plant has finally perished in the cool fall air. All we have left to remember it by was its harvest: Two bland-tasting tomatoes, each barely the size of pea.

But the saddest thing about fall to me is the street corners. Little more than a month ago, the street corners and intersections of this city were crammed with garage and yard sale signs, a beautiful array of cardboard and paper and Bristol board.

Now, those same corners sit all but empty.

And alas, it's but a sign of what is to come.

Garage sale season is winding down, and soon it will be dormant for another

The end of garage sale season is a tough time for avid garage sale fans like myself, and the first few weeks of knick-knack withdrawal can be particularly difficult, believe me.

Oh sure, there are second-hand stores and classified ads and all that, but it's just not the same as the whole garage sale experience.

That's because the garage sale isn't just like shopping; it's more like an adventure.

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Tables turned on ex-cop who ticketed motorists during garage sale

Stored under In the News on September 20, 2007 at 8:25 AM
POMPTON LAKES, N.J. - Tables have turned on a retired policeman who ticketed nearly 40 motorists during a borough-wide garage sale in Pompton Lakes.

The town is investigating whether George Gerhold's driveway is legal.

The municipal judge has dismissed four parking tickets and ordered three others to pay just $7.50 in court costs. An eighth was found guilty of idling next to a fire hydrant.

The judge says he's not convinced the driveway was properly installed.

Gerhold said he had a verbal agreement with the town's zoning officer when the driveway was built in the 1970s.

The 62-year-old had told the town he was frustrated with people parking in front of the 30-foot driveway during the July garage sale.

Mayor John Murrin tells The Record of Bergen County the Building Department will investigate.

[News Source]

Yard sale people scare me

Stored under In the News on September 13, 2007 at 7:33 AM
Yard sales have always held fond memories for me. I remember as a little girl my grandma and I would always go out to the rummage sales Saturday morning. She’d buy me books, dolls or basically whatever I wanted. I think most of my childhood clothes probably came from yard sales.

Yes, my grandma loved yard sales. My grandpa wasn’t a fan of them, so he never really gave grandma money to "waste on that junk." Little did he know that she always found ways to get cash for going "rummying," even it meant selling brand new clothes she ordered from Sears, using his credit card of course.

Grandma and I helped with the church rummage sales quite often as well. It was always a fun time. As I was sorting through my own items for a yard sale, I couldn’t help but think of her and wish she was around to be a part of it all.

The downside of having a yard sale is that you have to get up terribly early. My friend Melanie and I advertised our sale to start at 7 a.m. Of course, we knew we’d have a few early birds, but we weren’t prepared at all for what happened next.

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Yard sales used as lure to help sell homes

Stored under In the News on September 6, 2007 at 12:20 PM
Residents of a Lehigh Acres neighborhood say they are sick and tired of living around half-built and overgrown homes. This weekend, the group plans to clean up the streets. It's not just to beautify the neighborhood - but to sell it to potential buyers.

The idea is that a dirty lot simply isn't going to sell. So the group plans to pick up the garbage and rip out the brush, but they won't do it alone. They're calling on the realtors themselves for help.

Deborah Sebastian isn't happy with what she has seen. She says the Lehigh neighborhood she chose to build her dream home turned into a dump.

"Dump trucks, pick up trucks and business trucks - they dump all over and that gives us a bad look," said Sebastian.

To get to her home, Sebastian says she passes garbage galore. She says the the garbage is stacked, bagged and lingering - festering in Florida heat.

"They are going to come see all the trash, this is a trashy neighborhood! Why would I want to live here?" said Sebastian.

She says many builders have given up on their lots, abandoned landscaping, and can't even keep their signs in the ground.

"There are a lot of duplexes half-built. Some are all the way built but grass is overgrown. They are just not selling," said Sebastian.

Deborah is no realtor, but she thinks she knows what won't sell.


Stored under In the News on August 30, 2007 at 7:29 AM
Last weekend I had a new experience, my first yard sale. It was a fun time, spent with good friends, meeting a whole lot of wonderful people. A cloud cast a shadow upon us before we started however, created by a thief.

To the person who trespassed on my property Friday while I was at work and stole items from us, you ought to be ashamed of yourself. You are a vile person with no morals, ethics or respect for other people or their property.

Although our prices were more than fair, you would have been surprised by the amount of items we simply gave away to people who might not have had enough money in their pocket or were such incredible people, we just wanted them to have it. Had you asked, those things would have probably been given to you as well. Although I'm sure money wasn't your issue, since my neighbor saw the car you were driving.

Instead you will live in shame over such trivial things. You are nothing more than a criminal, having committed trespassing, larceny and burglary. Was it worth it? Do you feel good about yourself?

To all the other kind people who came by, thank you. It was a pleasure meeting and visiting with you. And for those who plan to have a yard sale of your own, beware of putting your things out early; there is a thief among us.

Brenda Ingram

Churchill County

[Article Source]

Mega garage sale spans 100 kilometres

Stored under In the News on August 23, 2007 at 8:07 AM
It's the Mother of all Yard Sales, the long-distance run of garage bargain-hunting, a smorgasbord of discounts.

It'll sprawl for about 100 kilometres across Elgin County, with more than 100 vendors -- from homeowners disposing of unwanted stuff, to churches and community groups recycling used items and businesses slashing the prices on surplus inventory.

If you drive the route of the historic Talbot Trail, it normally takes about 90 minutes at posted highway speeds. But this Saturday it could take you much longer -- especially if you have cash and the impulse to tickle your fancy.

Maybe it's books, CDs or DVDs, a folding card table, garden rake, power drill or crock pot.

Almost everything you can think of from a home has been offered in the sale's previous years, says Marg Emery, executive director of the St. Thomas-Elgin Tourist Association.

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How to run a garage sale

Stored under In the News on August 16, 2007 at 11:37 AM
In the rest of Canada, the cardboard signs and folding tables make their appearances throughout the entire stretch of summer.

In Ottawa, however, there is one particular day where the garage sale is elevated to the status of institution and attracts thousands from the region. Every fourth Saturday in May, residents of the Glebe neighbourhood put out their wares for purchase. Janet Sutherland, the event's community liaison, suggests setting up early (people show up at the Great Glebe Garage Sale at 6 a.m.) with all items already priced--either individually or in groups.

Instead of offering a hodgepodge for passersby, such as the items pictured below, she says items should be grouped by type (books for 25cents). Making sure you have a cash float with lots of change is also important.

Many Glebe residents try to beat out their neighbours with offerings besides the results culled from the basement -- brownies at 50cents a piece might make that table with the Boy George records and Buns of Steel tapes more attractive.

[News Source]

What's in Marilyn's mansion?

Stored under In the News on August 9, 2007 at 9:19 AM
Kim Dawson brings our attention to a story which deserves greater exposure than she is able to give it (pressures of space, time, need to give several hundred words to a story about how Kate Nash is to work with Gonzalez, a producer that only Canadian beatniks have heard of - yeah, that means you Feist): a story which features Marilyn Manson. And Eva Braun's handbag. And the skeleton of a four-year-old Chinese girl.

Here's how Kim reports the story on her estimable Playlist page: "Marilyn Manson is being sued by ex-keyboard player Stephen Bier who claims cash he is owed was spent on buying a handbag belonging to Hitler's wife Eva Braun."

It's only when you head to MTV, however, that the full freakish detail of this story begins to emerge.

They report: "In a breach-of-contract lawsuit filed Thursday afternoon (August 2) in Los Angeles Superior Court, former Marilyn Manson keyboardist Stephen Gregory Bier Jr. - known to fans by his stage name, Madonna Wayne Gacy - claims the shock rocker has been using the band's money to fund his lavish lifestyle, drug habit and the production of his upcoming film, "Phantasmagoria: The Visions of Lewis Carroll," among other things. The suit further alleges Manson took assets belonging to the rest of the band (money generated through touring, and album and merchandise sales) to purchase Nazi paraphernalia, African masks made of human skin and the full skeleton of a 4-year-old Chinese girl, all of which he has on display in his mansion at Chatsworth, California mansion."

Manson made his response to the suit via MTV. "The fact that he's claiming that I've treated him unfairly, financially, is really ridiculous," the singer said. "And I would never spend my money on a Chinese girl skeleton. That would be crossing the line. It's a Chinese boy, for the record,"

And you thought Manson's spooky persona was just for show! The case, as they say, is ongoing.

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Hamptons -- Half Price!

Stored under In the News on August 2, 2007 at 9:09 AM
The Hamptons was the spot to be for bargain-hunting celebs like Mandy Moore, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Kelly Ripa and Edie Falco this past weekend. The 10th annual Super Saturday "garage sale" event hosted over 200 vendors including the likes of Marc Jacobs and Dooney and Burke. Super Saturday hosts top designers who have a giant outdoor garage sale donating the previous years items with major discounts ... net proceeds benefit The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. Guilt free shopping!

In other NY news, Russell Simmons hosted the "Art for Life" party at his plush Hamptons home, attended by Oscar winner Forest Whitaker, and supermodel Petra Nemcova.

Meanwhile, in L.A. a pretty preggo Drea de Matteo was seen leaving Koi -- looking full and claiming she was "retired." "Joey" must have been good to her!

All this and much more in today's rummage sale edition of Star Catcher! No checks! Cash only!

[News Source]

Making money, seeing friends at Kid to Kid Sale

Stored under In the News on July 26, 2007 at 9:34 AM
Romeo Village Park was open for business the morning of Saturday, July 21.

The reason? The Kid to Kid Yard Sale, which gave children an opportunity to sell unwanted items for profit.

Thirty-six children signed up to sell, said the event's supervisor, Grace Venet of Romeo-Washington-Bruce Parks and Recreation.

"The weather's beautiful and the kids brought their treasures," Venet said. "I think a lot of us are buying each other's stuff."

Tables selling stuffed animals, dolls, board games, videotapes and books dominated the park. More outdoor-oriented sale items included baseball mitts, golf clubs and bicycles.

Washington Township resident Rachel Williams, 12, took the opportunity to sell two bearded dragons she had previously owned. The dragons' tank and necessary supplies were included in the purchase.

"I'm more of a warm-blooded animal kind of person," she said. "They were great pets, I just got kind of bored with them."

If she couldn't sell the dragons, Williams said, she would take them back to her house.

Romeo resident Robert Murphy was so enthusiastic about the sale that he wore a sandwich board to help promote the event.

"I just think it's great for the kids," Murphy said. "It's just wonderful."

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Tons of tips for your garage sale

Stored under In the News on July 19, 2007 at 7:35 AM
A crowd of people charged straight at me when the garage door opened for my big sale. Helpers jumped behind tables loaded with "good stuff"-and the fun of garage sales began.

The season of yard sales is upon us with signs around town and front yards overflowing with yesterday's gotta-have merchandise. Most folks face it eventually when "keen treasures" we've successfully accumulated must go.

For me, the revelation came when my empty-nest house had more grass to mow, more energy-consuming maintenance, and not enough of me to go around.

A smaller downtown Des Moines water-view condominium stole my heart and 32 years of "good stuff" had to go.

I zeroed in fearlessly, cleaning out nooks and crannies piled high with boxes and dusty stuff, some of which I hadn't seen for ages. Then the sorting began. Something I kept, however, are these useful tips that I learned from my yard sale.

Do you remember when your kids moved out years ago, leaving things for you to store "just for a little while?" Well, it's probably still in the same spot and even the kids wonder why they kept it. Tell them to come and get it, lock, stock and barrel.

This is also a good time for them to take items you intended for them that you won't need.

Listen to the music of their laughter and memory-talk as they sort the items. Gain some help, too, by arming everyone with a grease pencil, price tags, 409/Windex and paper towels. Clean stuff sells best.

No matter if the thing looks ugly, put it out. Toss odd items in a box marked, "Your choice-All ne price." It's amazing what people buy. Donate leftover items to charity.

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The ABC's of Yard Sales

Stored under In the News on July 12, 2007 at 7:08 AM

A -- Arrive Early. If the sale is advertised to begin at 9 a.m., you need to be sitting in your car in front of it and ready to leap out by 8:45. As yard-sale holders will report, diehard shoppers are often at their doorstep two hours early. This is just plain rude. Let the sellers at least have their first cup of coffee.

B -- Bring a Friend. It's nice to have someone to give you an honest opinion. My good friend Vicki is my best yard-sale companion. She talks me into buying things and I talk her out of buying things.

C -- Carry Cash. Unless you personally know the sellers, they most likely will not take a check, and you can forget about plastic.

D -- Don't Dilly-Dally. This isn't the mall. Take in the full picture on arrival and head toward the items that interest you most.

E -- Estate Sales are upscale yard sales. Often the sellers will enlist a private group to help conduct the sale. Things are pricier, and you will find people following you around as if you were just released from jail on a shoplifting charge.

F -- Forget the Fixer-Uppers. You may have good intentions when buying a chair with a broken leg, but truth be told, it most likely will remain in that condition until you pitch it.

G -- Go for it! If you are a female, rationalize your purchase with the sociological principle that men are the hunters and women are the gatherers. If you are a male, just stash your purchase with all of the other so-called tools in the shed and no one will ever notice it.

H -- Hang on to it! If you spot something you may want to buy, use the "hands-on" approach. Otherwise, before you can say "I've hit the mother lode," it will disappear before your eyes into someone else's hands.

I -- Inquire if needed. The sellers usually are very willing to answer questions, the most common being, "Does it work?"

J -- Jewelry. Check for missing stones, broken clasps, etc. Ask the seller if you want to try it on.

K -- Know your stuff. If you know there will be collectible items, do your homework and research the going rate.

L -- Leave kids, especially young ones, at home. There are many fragile items usually displayed within a child's reach. While you're at it, leave your non-yard-sale aficionado spouse home, too. You'll have more fun, and he/she will thank you for it.

M -- Mirrors. Mirrors, especially older ones, require inspection. Take a close look to ensure they would not be better suited for a fun house.

N -- Never leave your purchases unattended. If you can't carry them, lock them in your vehicle. The chaotic atmosphere of a busy yard sale can lead to sticky fingers.

O -- Open it. Don't hesitate to open drawers, jewelry boxes, luggage, etc. to make sure everything is functioning properly.

P -- Plug it in. When purchasing an electrical appliance, it's a good idea to ask if there is an available outlet to check it out.

Q -- Quick decisions are a must. The old adage, "you snooze, you lose" applies here. And if you're really not sure about buying, it's not fair to ask the seller to hold it for you.

R -- Returns are a no-no. If something is defective when you get it home, you could try to return it. Good luck.

S -- Sniff test. It's a good idea to check for mustiness, especially when buying old books or furniture.

T -- Tuck an extra $20 in your wallet. You'll be heartsick if you run out of cash and see someone carrying away a great find that in a perfect yard-sale world should have been yours.

U -- Use your imagination. If a piece of furniture is structurally sound, a coat of paint and some inexpensive hardware can do wonders.

V -- Vans, trucks or SUVs make it a lot easier to get large and bulky items home to where your spouse is not so eagerly waiting.

W -- Wear comfortable shoes.

X -- Xylophone. You just might find one. That's part of the fun of a yard sale; you never know what's going to be there.

Y -- Yard-sale listings. Start checking the classified section of your newspaper on Thursdays for dates, times, and places.

Z -- Zip up your purse or close your wallet before you overdo it. yard-sale shopping is a great hobby but you could end up with a bunch of stuff that you have no use for. Just in case, you can always have one of your own!

[News Source]

Sale features nothing but freebies

Stored under In the News on July 5, 2007 at 8:40 AM
he garage sale crowd was out in force Saturday morning and normally, Bethany Henry would have been among them.

But this week, Bethany - whose husband Todd calls her Lincoln's Garage Sale Goddess - had her own gig going. Lots of neat "stuff," arranged in easy-to-see groupings all over her garage, driveway and yard.

And all of it was free.

"I think that's wonderful, amazing. I couldn't believe it," said Cori Daniels of Lincoln, as she surveyed the household goods, clothing and toys.

Daniels said she'd never been to a free garage sale before. She picked up some clothes and knickknacks.

"I wish I'd gotten here earlier," she said.

Another shopper was looking for toys for her grandchildren to play with when they visit.

Jody Bruce was on her way to Chicago, when she stopped in Lincoln to pick up her mother. A friend alerted her to the "sale."

"This is pretty cool - amazing," Bruce said. "I got dishes and toys and knickknacks and picture frames and clothes."

A single Mom who called Friday night and said she had to work on Saturday got the toddler bed the Henrys gave away.

Bethany usually has a sale every year that brings in between $500 and $600.

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HBO Fans Hit Yard Sale

Stored under In the News on June 21, 2007 at 9:30 AM
It wasn't your grandmother's yard sale but if you searched hard enough you may have found some items from Uncle Junior's house, or maybe Tony and Carmela's house.

Bargain shoppers and die-hard fans lined up Tuesday outside a warehouse in Queens, N.Y.

They hoped to buy props used on the set of HBO productions, including a few from "The Sopranos."

The furniture included lamps, housewares and trinkets that once decorated the sets of numerous HBO shows.

Shoppers were disappointed to discover few familiar props from Tony's house or the "Bada Bing" were sold at the yard sale.

James Gandolfini's stand-in also went to search for memorabilia.

"The stuff I wanted was all shipped off to L.A. The house stuff, the kitchen, the wall clock which I had my eyes on since day one, episode one, eight, nine years ago. Didn't get that," Donald Metzger, "Tony's" stand-in, said.

The majority of the well-known props are now in Los Angeles for safekeeping until Time Warner decides what to do with them.

[News Source]

Neighborhood `Free for All' is a feast of leftovers

Stored under In the News on June 14, 2007 at 7:55 AM
By Edward M. Eveld

McClatchy Newspapers


KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Ah, summertime garage sales - the perfect opportunity to gather up all that idle stuff, disgorge it and make a little pocket money to boot.

Selling can be tricky, though. Some items languish, unable to lure a buyer. Maybe you priced them wrong. Maybe the right buyer is out there but never happened along.

Judy Widener knows what comes next. For years her Volker neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo., timed its summer neighborhood garage sale to coincide with a "bulky item pickup" day. That way, unsold stuff could go right to the curb for quick removal. Convenient but bothersome for the recycling-minded.

Let's not send it to the landfill, she thought.

That's when it hit her: Hold a follow-up event, like a garage sale but without the money part. The idea immediately inspired a name: a "Free for All."

Unsold items from individual garage sales in the neighborhood would be amassed in one place, and people would take what they could use.

"It's free, for all," Widener said, whether you live in the neighborhood or not. "It totally describes itself."

Widener knew that many garage sale leftovers had appeal. Hadn't bulky item pickup day generated a parade of extreme bargain hunters who arrive in advance of refuse trucks to shop the piles at the curb?

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Garage-sale green: Recycling for a profit

Stored under In the News on June 7, 2007 at 8:33 AM
ST. LOUIS - John Jennings arrived early, sporting a ball cap that read "Senior Citizen: Gimme a Damn Discount." He wouldn't need that bargaining chip. After a half hour of scouring a yard sale on Hummel Avenue in southwest St. Louis, Jennings departed with a cute - his adjective - little tea set.

The $2 price tag seemed more than fair.

"Well, you have to buy something," Jennings said of the set destined for his granddaughter. "Why stop and look at a yard full of merchandise, then walk away with nothing?"

Jennings, a retired warehouseman and regular garage-sale visitor, is part of an army of bargain hunters who frequent the makeshift markets that pop up during the warmer months. In an age of Internet commerce, these old-fashioned, face-to-face transactions are holding their own against online auction sites such as eBay.

"All the eBay-ers are out there looking for finds, so that has really magnified things," says Bruce Littlefield, author of the new book "Garage Sale America." There are roughly 500 million garage sales a year across the country, he says, with an estimated $3 billion (in small bills) changing hands. Also coming into play: an increased awareness of reusable resources.

"Garage saling is the greenest thing you can do," Littlefield says. "It's the ultimate in recycling."

Recycling is just a trendier term for "getting rid of all of this extra stuff," which is how Gloria Barber and daughters-in-law Jen and Natalie described their mission on Hummel Avenue.

The three combined their clutter at Jen's place, where eclectic merchandise filled the yard, the garage and spilled into the driveway: Tupperware bowls stacked beside a trampoline; a New Kids on the Block video; vinyl pressings of polka king Frankie Yankovic; a wedding dress (worn once?); a Christmas tree; a salsa and chips dish in the shape of a sombrero that played "The Mexican Hat Dance" at the push of a button; a barber's chair.

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Garage sales still hot in eBay age

Stored under In the News on May 31, 2007 at 9:55 AM
Shelly Bruette was setting up the inventory at her first-ever rummage sale when a customer found his mark.

"I had an old sewing machine with the folding table," said Bruette, 33, of Appleton. "I had it priced at $10. He offered five; I sold it for seven."

So even rummaging -- that time-honored pastime of the bargain-hunting faithful -- has become a competitive sport in the age of eBay.

The tires on the bike owned by Chris Hoffman for the past five years show no signs of wear. "Make an offer!" its price tag begged.

"I'm looking for one with the bigger (off-road) tires, said Hoffman, 40, of Grand Chute. Hoffman is a veteran of the rough-and-tumble world of the garage sale, that means to riches or key to unloading unwanted junk.

Hoffman said the vultures begin circling each morning 30 to 45 minutes before the rummage sales begin. To them, the pursuit of the deal overwhelms the innocence of this most casual exchange of greetings and goods.

"If something's two bucks and you sell it for a quarter, then they'll turn around and sell it in their own sale," Hoffman said Friday. "That's just the nature of the beast."

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Yard-sale tales

Stored under In the News on May 17, 2007 at 6:49 AM
It's the season for garage sale stories as well as all the wheeling and wheedling. dealing and dabbling in bargainspotting.

From the savviest antique dealer to the casual buyer, everyone loves to hear about the "one that didn't get away."

Here are five stories that will entertain, and if you’re a garage saler, inspire. Plus, I get to tell my own best story:

In the era shortly before e Bay, I was about 10th in line at a church rummage sale. A few people behind me was a really aggressive competitor.

Then I spotted a treasure on a bookshelf inside a fenced area: "The Adventures of Superman," the first hardcover novel based on a comic book superhero. Published in 1942, four years after the icon-to-be debuted in the comics, the book was complete with four gorgeous color plates illustrated by co-creator Joe Shuster. What made this copy worth nearly $1,000 was the rare dust jacket - in near-new condition!

Three elderly women were right behind me in line. I knew that not even my voracious competitor, if he had indeed spotted the same book, would dare to knock these women aside (though I was wrong). I, too, was delayed by two slow-moving people in front of me, but I scrambled to the bookshelf as quickly as I could, grabbing the book and holding it close. I heard him five seconds behind me, uttering an obscenity because he could not possibly grab the treasured tome or steal it away from me.

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YARD SALES: Tips for succeeding when selling your stuff

Stored under In the News on May 10, 2007 at 9:21 AM
By April Amadon/ Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Fifty cents for an old baseball jersey, 10 cents each for a set of plates.

Just because some of the items sold at garage sales seem cheap doesn’t mean holding a sale isn’t a profitable venture.

On Thursday, the first day of their garage sale, Dion and Julie Pender of Lincoln Avenue Extension took in almost $1,300.

It was the biggest one-day haul ever for the couple, who hold garage sales every year.

This year, the Penders were moving, so they had a lot to get rid of.

"We had some more bigger-ticket things," Dion said. “We had a couch and a loveseat, a computer desk, we got rid of that.”

As the weather gets warmer and people are doing their annual spring cleaning, garage sale season is just beginning.

The Web site advises anyone planning a garage sale to start early, as much as a month in advance, going through closets, setting aside anything sellable and saving grocery bags.

Proper signage is always important. The Penders put up neon yellow signs around surrounding neighborhoods, with big black letters that were visible to drivers.

Rita Lasal, who set up a sale in her Rapids Road garage on Friday, said advertising in the classifieds helps.

There’s no real science to pricing items, other than to keep in mind that buyers like to haggle.

"It’s amazing how much people will try to bump you down on stuff," Dion said. "If you really want $20 for something, you might want to put $22 on it."

Thursdays and Fridays are the best days, Julie said. Though they planned for the whole weekend, most of their best stuff was gone by Friday morning.

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Sale unearths used treasures

Stored under In the News on May 3, 2007 at 7:03 AM

The area's largest garage sale, held every two years by the Browncroft Neighborhood Association, returns this weekend for scroungers and savers.

"We expect more than 200 sales in a square mile," says Sharon Bloemendaal, in charge of publicity for the 2007 Biennial Browncroft Garage Sale. Quentin Road alone, she notes, has sales at 11 of its 24 houses. One year, "I counted 20 people in my front yard at one time," says Bloemendaal.

Items being sold at each sale - and which days each home will be having a sale - are listed in advance on the neighborhood association's Web site. Some sales start as early as Friday.

The Browncroft sale is as busy as the Corn Hill Arts Festival, says Bloemendaal, but this sale offers affordable, pre-owned treasures. "People plan trips from hundreds of miles away to coincide with this event."

Bloemendaal, for instance, is selling loads of fabric and a circa-1860s melodeon (like a pump organ). Other items for sale include antique dressers, lawn equipment, costume jewelry, baby furniture and equipment, tapes of old radio programs and musical instruments.

Park your car outside the neighborhood, then bring your strollers or bikes for easier movement, advises Bloemendaal. Want an item that's too unwieldy? Put a deposit on it, she says, and come back for it later. Since the initial sale in 1981, some folks have also admired the flowering cherry and forsythia, and the 1920s elegant homes. Many also enjoy the festive atmosphere.

"It's a happening, a fair, a festival - celebrating the hunt for treasures," says Bloemendaal, "and it's a lovely neighborhood for a walk."

[News Source]

Sale turns clutter to cash

Stored under In the News on April 26, 2007 at 7:48 AM
It was a bargain shopper's dream.

Spread out across the SilverLakes community in western Miramar and Pembroke Pines, more than 300 homeowners offered everything from clothing and furniture to antique cars at the recent seventh annual Garage Sale and Charity Event.

Treasure hunters even had a map to help them navigate to each sale.

"It makes it easy to get around and find all the sellers," said shopper Amy Regent, of Miramar.

SilverLakes is made up of 38 sub-developments, not all of which allow homeowners to have garage sales. But once a year, those rules are relaxed and the security gates swing open for browsers from all over. "Residents like it because they know when it is and have time to get ready. They also don't need to advertise it," said Joy Savaiko, the community's director of special events.

The two-day sale is a benefit to homeowners who get to clean out the clutter. Residents also donated items to a local homeless shelter and the Salvation Army, which lined up trucks at the community park to accept donations.

"It is very good for both the community and us," said Dave Sayre, director of operations at the Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center. Sayre said the donations filled three trucks and one trailer the first day of the sale.

Previous charities to benefit from the event include the Miami Rescue Mission, Crossroads Food Bank, Women in Distress and Kids in Distress.

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No yard sale: Woman cleans house on eBay

Stored under In the News on April 12, 2007 at 11:52 AM
ST. PAUL, Minn. - Lisa Perry wants to make one thing clear about her decision to sell nearly everything she owns in one massive eBay auction.

"This might be midlife, but it's not a crisis," the 45-year-old St. Paul woman said. "It's midlife excitement."

When the online auction ends Thursday, the top bidder will get everything but Perry's dog, cat, photo albums and some clothing.

Talk about a clean slate: The 300-plus items going in a single lot include snowshoes, a futon sofa, a coffee maker, a queen-size bed, a Village People album, a milk crate of seashells, a computer, skis and shoes. There's a coffee table with inlaid tiles, Danish modern bookshelves and rugs.

The auction winner has to pick everything up within three weeks.

You can have it all right now for $2,000. That's her reserve number, meaning she can back out of the deal if the top bid falls short of two-grand. But she's so ready to unload her stuff, she might lower the reserve.

"I don't need it all," Perry said. "I don't use it all. I just have it all. Actually, it has me."

Perry has been studying Buddhism the last six years and started fancying the notion of "releasing attachment to things."

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Thanks, garage sale thief

Stored under In the News on April 5, 2007 at 9:40 AM
By Roger D. James, Galesville, Wis.

Thank you to all but a few of the people who came to our "garage/moving" sale. My wife and I had an enjoyable three days meeting and visiting with you. We feel that we "did well." It was interesting and educational that some items sold so rapidly and others that we thought would go quickly were slow. All things considered, it was fun.

Unfortunately, one female had a different approach than most and "took a little shine" off our experience. Some also stretched "good taste" or "fair" by moving items into boxes that were marked at one price for the box. That was disappointing but not to the extent that it was a big deal.

On the other hand, young female, you may choose to try and fool yourself into thinking you made a good deal when you piled so much together then got it all for $30 (offered $20 for $60 to $70 worth of items that you removed some tags from).

I don’t think you really got "a deal" because those items and your forehead have "thief" indelibly written on them. Please understand that removing the tags and hiding a platter under the clothes was not part of the process of dickering or bartering. You know very well that your intent was to hide items and you rationalized that you would then "get a deal."

It’s doubtful that your conscience will bother you much, but please remember that you did, in fact, write "stolen item" on some items. When you look at them, only you will see the writing — others will see a really good deal.

Yes, you "paid for them," and Sheila, my wife, did agree. She didn’t get to see all of what you had in the pile (she was busy with honest people); you’d done well arranging items. You did steal her smile and part of the fun she had. Friday night and Saturday she still worked at her sale and enjoyed the interaction with others. You were still there though and kept a dark shadow over the enjoyment of a very, very good person.


Garage sales a social event

Stored under In the News on April 5, 2007 at 9:37 AM
Garage sales, yard sales, rummage sales -- by any name, low prices are sweet.

While some people sell their stuff to clean out the clutter and others do it for the money, families along Bramble in Saginaw Township go to sales to catch up on gossip, said John E. Cyborowski, 60, who lives in the neighborhood.

"We have three neighbors who get together and do it every year," Cyborowski said. "They don't do it so much for getting rid of things. They do it as a get-together."

The sale is from 9 a.m. to

5 p.m. today and Friday.

"If it was up to me, I wouldn't have one," Cyborowski said, explaining that the women folk insist. "Two of the ladies have young kids, and every year, this is their chance to sell the clothes they grew out of."

In cities such as Frankenmuth, businesses profit as well as those hosting the sales.

"We've already had people calling, asking when the citywide sale is," said Jennifer A. Tebedo, president of the Frankenmuth Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau.

"Cars clog the streets on both sides. It's wonderful," she said. "It's a lot of fun, and for the businesses, it's a wonderful food and beverage day."

People wishing to place an advertisement in the classified section of The Saginaw News can benefit with a how-to kit, said Denise Taglauer, supervisor of classifieds.

The kit contains a checklist of things to do for a sale, an inventory sheet, tips for a successful sale, about 100 price stickers and two garage sale signs.

[News Source]

Garage sale: Sign of spring

Stored under In the News on March 29, 2007 at 8:00 AM
As I was driving through the snow-filled scenery last week, I caught a glimpse of something amazing. Was that truly what I thought it was? Could it possibly be?

I turned my head to make sure. Yes, it was a sign for an upcoming garage sale.
Wishful thinking? No. Spring was finally arriving.

Maybe it’s just the new Daylight Saving Time thing that’s got me encouraged. I love that it’s still light out at seven p.m.

It’s becoming obvious winter is going away, but a bit too slowly. One day, I actually caught a bit of green on the lawn outside my kitchen window, before we were hit with a late-season snowstorm.

The poor birds, back from wherever they go for the winter, seemed as confused as I was. Still, they’re hanging on, knowing warm weather and worms will soon be here.
Yes, things are promising. Note the following sure signs of spring:

- The Easter Bunny has arrived at the mall.

- Regis and Kelly are on spring hiatus.

- You can buy Peeps (in a wonderful assortment of colors!) at the supermarket.

- It's almost tax day.

- I saw a bug in my bathroom.

- Some of my neighbors have come out of hibernation.

- "Dancing with the Stars" has started again.

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A peculiar sale for the inquisitive

Stored under In the News on March 22, 2007 at 8:24 AM
A garage sale in Baldwin Lake Saturday and Sunday, March 24 and 25, is bound to draw the curious. They may not necessarily be looking for a bargain, but they’ll be looking for clues to a bizarre story that unfolded there in the summer of 2002.

The garage sale of sorts is at property on Pigeon Road off Baldwin Lake Road. The garage sits on property belonging to the Natural Heritage Foundation now under the guise of Wild Haven Ranch. The garage is where Christian Lindblad and his girlfriend, Tina Stebbins, lived. It’s where he shot her and held her hostage for several days while Christian and his parents tended to her life-threatening wounds with soap, water and gauze.

No house sits on the property, just a two-story garage that has been taken over by critters. When the paramedics took Stebbins to the hospital and the sheriff’s department arrested the Lindblads in July 2002, the garage was closed and left to the elements. Some office equipment has been shoved inside, and it appears that items have been shoved and stacked haphazardly to make room for the office equipment. But little else has been touched.

In the upstairs make-shift apartment once occupied by Stebbins, Lindblad and their children, food remains in the tiny kitchen cupboards, clothes hang in a makeshift closet and in the kids’ room, blankets and toys are scattered as if the children hopped out of bed that morning and would return at sundown. It might have been home at one time. Now the cubicle is a refuge for mouse droppings, dust, dirt and junk.

Outside isn’t much different. Abandoned cars, campers, toys and a swing set, scrap metal, fencing, pipes and old ski lift towers litter the property. A bunker that’s waiting to be opened is barely visible under a collapsed shed and junk piled around it. What was once a beautiful piece of property with an extraordinary view has lost its luster.

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Backyard toys become affordable

Stored under In the News on March 15, 2007 at 7:43 AM
Molded plastic varieties displace rusty sets of yore

Like many parents in her suburban Long Island neighborhood, Patty Tilkin is a veteran buyer of backyard toys. She’s shopped for climbers and slides, seesaws and wagons, child-sized castles and plastic log cabins.

“We’ve had a million things,” she says, “even one of those little railroad tracks with the train that’s battery-powered.”

And yet Tilkin has spent surprisingly little money transforming her yard into a play space for her 6-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son. With so many affordable, durable products now on the market, the challenge for parents isn’t tracking down the right toy. It’s deciding which among many to buy.

The molded plastic pieces made by companies such as Little Tikes and The Step2 Co. are easy to assemble and require little or no maintenance. Forget the cumbersome metal swing sets of your childhood, the ones that came with six dozen nuts and bolts for your father to assemble and that were rusty within a year.

Today’s plastic climbers snap together easily and begin at about $100. Slides and teeter-totters run as little as $39.99. And for parents who consider brightly colored outdoor toys an eyesore, these products are available in shades such as tan and dark green, too.

As a result, sales of outdoor toys are growing, says Dotti Foltz, director of marketing communications for Step2. “Parents, if they have the luxury of having a backyard, really like the idea of making it a kid-friendly area,” she says.

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Downsize to right size

Stored under In the News on March 1, 2007 at 8:37 AM
Tight finances, empty nests and quality-of-life changes are reasons that 10 percent of baby boomers will buy some form of real estate this year, the National Association of Realtors reports.

For many, that translates into downsizing their lives so they move into new digs with less clutter.

The difficult task may be approached with dread or even depression. But some who have downsized describe it differently:

"Extremely liberating," says Sally Heiser, 63. Heiser moved from a four-bedroom house to a mobile home in 1998.

Moving from the home that her parents built in 1936 was not as heart wrenching as Heiser expected.

"To this day I haven't shed a tear," she says.

Heiser, of Mesa, Ariz., believes it's because she focused on what she was moving to — a relationship with grandkids living in the same state — instead of what she was moving from.

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Top Design Contestants Scour Garage Sales

Stored under In the News on February 22, 2007 at 9:18 AM
"Top Design" finds the remaining eight contestants scouring nearby garage sales for new and mostly used pieces to help them create the next "Top Design," airing Wednesday, February 21 at 10 P.M. ET/PT. Every talented interior designer must have an "eye for design, " especially when their interior design choices are limited by a small budget and garage sale items.

The fourth episode of Bravo's "Top Design" entitled "One Man's Trash," premiering on Wednesday, February 21 at 10 P.M. ET/PT, will test the eye of each of the remaining eight contestants. They must create a living and work space for their clients, who are all design students, using yard sale materials.

Special guest judge Joe Stewart (production designer) will join host Todd Oldham ("Top Design" host, designer) -- as judges Jonathan Adler ("Top Design" lead judge, interior designer), Margaret Russell ("Top Design" judge, editor-in-chief of ELLE DECOR Magazine) and Kelly Wearstler ("Top Design" judge, interior designer), decide who has created the "Top Design," and who will be sent home.


Sharon Osbourne to Hold Garage Sale

Stored under In the News on February 15, 2007 at 6:53 AM
Rock matriarch Sharon Osbourne is cleaning house and selling all of her unwanted items this weekend in West Hollywood, Calif.

The sale will take place on Saturday and Sunday and the $10 entrance fee will benefit The Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Program at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

According to an e-mail invitation, "Sharon Osbourne is cleaning house and is holding a sale of her fabulous designer clothing, handbags, shoes and accessories.

"Most items are brand new, complete with tags!"

The sale will feature pieces from designers including Dolce & Gabbana, Chloe, Stella McCartney, Marc Jacobs, Prada, Hermes, Chanel, Gucci, Manolo Blahnik, Jimmy Choo and Louis Vuitton, among others.

The clothing ranges in size from a tiny 2 to size 10.

[News Source]

A sale so simple, a child could do it

Stored under In the News on February 8, 2007 at 7:30 AM
Last summer, our neighborhood had a community garage sale. As we gathered, our once-loved trinkets in the driveway, our 4-year-old son, Robbie, became intrigued. He wanted to sell some of his items, too. So we made a little pact with him: If he sold some of his old toys, he could use the money toward the new “big-boy” car seat he had wanted for quite some time.

As the potential customers walked along the sidewalk, my son walked along with them. “Do you have kids? Would you like to look at my toys?” Robbie asked the passersby. His eagerness and enthusiasm made many trade show salespeople look like amateurs.

After trying his charm with three people, one kind lady took the bait. Robbie escorted her to his toy table. With his arms behind his back, he proudly watched her look over his toys. Finally, the woman picked up his plastic piggy bank, priced at 50 cents. After looking it over, she calmly placed it back on the table. “You have very nice toys,” she told Robbie as she began to walk away.

Without hesitation, Robbie asked, “Do you like my piggy bank?” “It's very nice,” the woman said as she continued to move on. Robbie followed her. “Would you like to buy it?” he asked. She looked down and smiled at the short little man. “No, thank you,” she replied.

“Do you already have a piggy bank?” Robbie asked curiously. The lady cocked her head, “Well, no.” “Well then, you should buy mine,” Robbie said, confidently handing her the 50-cent bank.

With the bank in her hand and a smile on her face, the lady reached into her purse and handed the 4-year-old salesman two quarters. Robbie happily put the coins in the cash box, thanked the nice lady and returned to the sidewalk to talk to the next stranger.

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Garage Sale Gal to teach MCC class

Stored under In the News on February 1, 2007 at 7:04 AM
Barbara Thelander needed an idea to take to the table for her upcoming meeting. While reading The Arizona Republic one morning it came to her.

"I thought, this is a person we should have teaching for us. You are so informed and your columns always have tips that make good, common sense," she told me during a recent phone conversation.

Barbara is the director of Community and Continuing Education for Mesa Community College. She was reading one of my columns on garage sales when she got the idea for me to pass along some of my garage sale expertise to students.

That's right! The Garage Sale Gal - that's me - will be teaching a non-credit course this spring on selling stuff and buying bargains at garage sales. Now, you might be thinking, it's a garage sale, how hard can it be? You put some stuff in the driveway and sell it, right?

Well, true. But there are some things you can learn that'll help you better maximize your garage sale skills. I'll be giving tips on topics such as how to negotiate for a good price - whether you're buying or selling, which day is the best day to hold a garage sale (and this may surprise you!) and what simple "tool" can make or break your sale.

Terri Sparks is also with community education at MCC, and she says we just can't ignore the popularity of garage sales in the Valley.

"Everywhere you go you see garage sales. So, why not learn how to buy and sell effectively. I believe there's an art to it and I think (Lynda) can help us convey that."

[News Source]

Garage Sale Gal: Buy what you love

Stored under In the News on February 1, 2007 at 7:00 AM
Valentine's Day is just around the corner and it got me to thinking about love. Not the deep-down love we feel for our spouse, child, friend or pet, but the love of superficial things.

I have a rule when it comes to shopping at garage sales: Buy only what I love. Problem is I've broken that rule a few times. OK, I've broken it a lot!

I have a hard time passing up a bargain even if I don't adore it. For instance, who can pass up two brand new lampshades still wrapped in plastic for just 50 cents? I can always use a lampshade, even though I haven't yet. I also rescue things from certain death. I forked over $1 for an old, yellow tabletoprotary dial phone. I couldn't bear to see it go into the trash. So now it's sitting silently, disconnected in my office gathering dust instead of at the bottom of the landfill.

Then there are times when I buy something because I just can't look away, let alone walk away. It was a hot, summer day in Gilbert when I saw it lying helplessly in a garage sale. Some people might consider it tacky, but sometimes tacky is good. It was an incredible, large, hanging Mediterranean-looking, oil lamp - the kind you might have seen in an Italian restaurant in the 1970s, where the decor was lovably gaudy but comforting as you chowed down on your spaghetti with meat sauce.

It now hangs in my parents' Arizona room. This is just one of the many things I've bought but don't need. So I've been trying to figure out how I can curb my enthusiasm for all things unusual and inexpensive.

I saw some advice on the Internet that suggests we should "avoid impulse buying" at garage sales. But isn't that what garage sales are all about? When I'm walking up to a sale, I know I don't need anything. I'm usually not shopping for any one thing in particular. That tip doesn't help me.

Continue Reading..

Anything's collectible

Stored under In the News on January 18, 2007 at 9:06 AM
DETROIT -- After I wrote about a woman who saves strangers' discarded shopping lists, I asked to hear from other collectors.

Now I know about folks who collect not only matchbooks and blue-and-white teapots, but women's stiletto heels, sock monkeys, AOL CD come-ons, umbrella covers and bits and pieces of famous places in the world, including the Great Wall of China and the Paris tunnel where Princess Di met her death.

One 83-year-old woman wrote to say, however, that she collects only "dust and unopened boxes of Jell-O. I have every flavor."

This project was not intended to explain why people collect, but one fellow on an Internet forum said it "keeps me out of trouble [and] gives me something to focus my energy on.

"My girlfriend jokes that I will never cheat on her because I elect to stay home on a Friday night to organize my stuff rather than join my buddies at a bar."

The collectors here don't have elegant explanations, either. They call it fun, nothing more. They're proud of what they've achieved and don't mind showing it off.

Continue Reading.

Hundreds get garage sale fix

Stored under In the News on January 11, 2007 at 10:02 AM
(January 7, 2007) - HENRIETTA - The first year Wendy Marullo came to the annual garage sale at Minett Hall, she wasn't really prepared for all the wooden boxes and Coca-Cola items she'd want to buy. So she only brought one bag to carry things home in.

"That year my dad and I bought a suitcase on wheels and filled it up," she said as her father went on shopping and pulled a wire cart behind him. Marullo's own cart stood nearby, not quite half full of things for herself and her husband.

All summer long, Marullo, of Canaseraga, Allegany County, goes to garage sales, looking for bargains, and the indoor sale at the Monroe County Fair & Expo Center gives her a chance to enjoy her hobby during the winter.

She and hundreds of others had their pick of items from more than 100 booths Saturday. One booth offered rusty old children's wagons; another had dishes that looked like they came from Grandma's cupboard.

Lots of vintage board games were spread throughout and plenty of wooden benches, records, pictures and knickknacks filled booths.

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Clean up: Turn clutter into cash

Stored under In the News on January 11, 2007 at 9:59 AM
In the '70s, actor and comedian Redd Foxx portrayed the character Fred Sanford on the hit TV series "Sanford & Son," in which he and his TV son played owners of a junkyard. Although the show's set was a simple, sparsely decorated home, you just knew it was smack dab in the middle of the messiest junkyard known to humankind.

Well, we don't live anywhere near a junkyard, but we often feel like we're "smack dab in the middle" of the one that belonged to the Sanfords. So we have a New Year's resolution that will ensure clear paths and junk-free surroundings: unclutter everything!

Here's our plan:

First, we will be giving as much as possible to charities. Yes, a garage sale is great, but it doesn't come with high returns through built-in tax credits.

Next, we will list what's left on eBay. You can sell just about anything on the Internet.

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Wanna Get Into Whitney Houston's Pants?

Stored under In the News on January 4, 2007 at 6:50 AM
Troubled star Whitney Houston is getting the junk out of her trunk, literally. The superstar is having severe financial troubles and now due to a court order, she's selling off her prized possessions because the girl needs some cash.

Apparently having a garage sale is the latest trend in Hollywood, Tori Spelling practically sold the clothes off her back at her yard sale. The auction will take place in her New Jersey home and if your lucky, you can get your very own Bobby Brown "Boston Music Awards: Best Male Vocalist Award" (which he received in the 80's).

All you Whitney fanatics, can even get into Whitney's pants, bustiers, famous stage outfits and accessories, including intimate undergarments (gross!). The auction will take place next week and could bring in hundreds of thousands of dollars in welcome cash.

I'm guessing Arista mogul Clive Davis hasn’t cut home girl a check yet, cause this diva is even selling off her Dolce & Gabbana bustier bras, her four velvet bodysuits with "WH" logos, six black stretch pants, several gold, black, white and red evening dresses, and 16 wardrobe cases. Not to mention the musical instruments and props used in her stage shows over the years including pianos, keyboards, drums, synthesizers, speakers and amplifiers. Among the more unusual items are a slot machine, a leather whip and a chair described as "Whitney's throne."

Continue Reading.. with pics

Garage Sale Gal: Never give up

Stored under In the News on December 28, 2006 at 7:02 AM
When you go to garage sales there are three things to keep in mind while searching for bargains: Keep your eyes open, be curious (nosy) and adore animals. Sounds a bit odd, I know, but all three helped lead me to quite a find at a recent sale.

It was cold, OK, freezing, on a recent Saturday morning in the Valley. But despite the low temperatures there were still a lot of garage sales. I pulled up to one in east Mesa and I knew right away I wasn't interested in buying anything, or so I thought.

I did, however, see something that will always coax me out of my car and up the driveway: A cute dog. The owners had a darling Shin Tzu-Bichon mix named Gizmo. (I love dogs almost as much as garage sale bargains so I had to give him some attention.)

I bent down to Gizmo's level and we exchanged pleasantries. I scratched his ears and talked to him and he gave me a little tail wag. I was rising up to go when I saw it. A darling Halloween basket.

This wasn't just any basket, though. It was a highly collectible Longaberger. These are handmade in Dresden, Ohio, and signed and dated by the artist. They eventually retire them and each one becomes quite the collectors' item.

The basket I spotted in the garage in a container was round and sported a lid on top with a darling handle in the shape of a ghost.

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Yard Sale Attack

Stored under In the News on December 14, 2006 at 7:08 AM
n 82-year-old woman is accused of getting out of hand at a yard sale in San Carlos Park, Florida over the weekend.

Deputies say she stabbed a man with a knife, frightening customers and neighbors alike.

Grant Boxleitner has the story.

"She was jabbing at me. She was jabbing at me, literally with the buck knife," said David Paci.

Paci got much more than he bargained for at his neighbor's garage sale. He says 82-year-old Sybil Atterbury started chucking knives.

"She reached in and threw a chef knife at me, probably a 9-10-inch knife," said Paci.

Witnesses say Atterbury was honking the horn and cursing at anyone within earshot.

"There were people buying things and I'm trying to make change, and his woman came running up and says here's a dollar. The woman's got a gun," said Bev Hornack.

It wasn't a gun, but according to deputies, Atterbury had at least two knives in her car, including a large butcher knife.

"By the time I looked back, she had another buck knife in her hand, taking jabs at me, and she got me twice on the arm," said Paci.

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With garage sales, the early birds are often vultures

Stored under In the News on December 14, 2006 at 7:06 AM
ON HEARING that household clutter is the enemy of creativity and positive energy, I organised a garage sale, conveniently forgetting that I'd previously sworn never, ever, under any circumstances, to hold another one. Seconds after placing the advertisement over the phone, I realised that the extremely chatty person at the local paper had talked me into an outrageously expensive boxed ad. There goes $40 profit already.

Two days after the ad appeared we received a letter from a very forward real estate agent who had noticed the ad and was offering his professional expertise if we were thinking of moving. Even more startling, his letter was personally addressed. Um, thanks, but no thanks.

We decluttered, with a few heated exchanges about what could or could not be sold, and tossed a mountainous pile of energy-sapping items into the garage. I could feel the creativity returning already and designed some big, colourful signs to direct innocent pedestrians to our colossal pile of junk.

After arranging the items so that customers could actually get into the garage, there was just one more vital thing to do - stick a shiny 50-cent coin to the garage floor, which would provide endless unbridled, guilty entertainment while we watched dozens of gullible visitors attempt to pick it up.

In garage sale land, Tuesday is the new Saturday and 8am the new 9am. After we advertised the sale's starting time as 9am on Saturday, three dealers knocked on the door during the week hoping for a preview. Um, didn't you read my outrageously expensive boxed ad? Obviously not carefully enough. Come back on Saturday. And they did - at 8am.

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Sharp-eyed browser at Michigan tag sale brings home piece of Derby history

Stored under In the News on December 7, 2006 at 9:33 AM
- DERBY - Had it not been for Ed Tackach’s curiosity, a 130-year-old piece of Derby’s past might not ever have come home.

Now, because of his generosity, a historic musical instrument will grace City Hall.

While on vacation in Kalamazoo, Mich., in 2003, Tackach and his wife, Penny, decided to check out a garage sale. Tackach, who was feeling a bit tired, stayed behind in the car while his wife rummaged through the antiques. However, Tackach’s curiosity got the best of him, and he ventured out to peruse the knickknacks.

He quickly spied an old upright piano sitting in the corner of the garage. Crafted of maple and oak, the piano had some nicks and scratches, but still had its original caster wheels and most of its keys were intact. Tackach, who happens to be Derby’s historian, is always on the lookout for items of historical significance, so he lifted up the piano’s lid, in hopes of learning more about the 800-pound instrument.

"I flipped open the lid, and there, in big gold letters that were in perfect shape, were the words, ‘Sterling Piano Company, Derby, CT,’" Tackach said. "I just stood there with my mouth open."

On closer inspection, Tackach discovered a second Sterling insignia, forged into the piano’s cast-iron interior.

The instrument dates back to around 1876.

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Rock 'N' Rummage isn't your average garage sale

Stored under In the News on November 30, 2006 at 7:41 AM
Rock 'N' Rummage isn't your mom's lame yard sale. It's an event that brings the yard, garage, market and fair into the bar. Rock 'N' Rummage is a true alternative garage sale, selling music memorabilia, books, DVDs, CDs, artwork, clothing, vintage items, jewelry and handmade crafts. Hard-to-find items are abundant, and everything from horror movie posters to autographed Insane Clown Posse CDs turn up on the Rock 'N' Rummage tables.

Filmmakers Casey Schwochow and Beth Amber started Rock 'N' Rummage in the fall of 2005 and created a music-, drinking- and merchandise-centered event. Over the past year, Rock 'N' Rummage has taken Detroit by storm and popped up in several local bars as well as events such as the Fourth Street Fair.

In recent years online shopping and eBay have really taken off. But if you still want that personal shopping experience, a night of Rock 'N' Rummage might be just what you're looking for. One of the unique aspects of Rock 'N' Rummage is that besides taking part in shopping, you are invited to take part in setting up shop and selling your own stuff. No reservations are needed, and there are no fees for the tables.

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Yard-sale fans rally to recycle political signs

Stored under In the News on November 27, 2006 at 11:33 AM
What I hate most about elections is that they so often seem to go on forever. Oh, the losing politicians fade away quickly enough, and the meaningless slogans are soon forgotten.

But the campaign signs often stay around for months, littering the landscape unnecessarily.

Across the nation more than 20 million campaign signs were put out this election season, according to The New York Times.

A recent Times article said officials in nine states have imposed new restrictions on where campaign signs can be posted and for how long.

Delaware, for example, has begun charging campaigns $25 for each sign still on public property 30 days after the election.

Virginia is allowing deputized volunteers to remove signs from public property.

In Columbus, Ohio, the traffic administrator mailed letters to all candidates pleading with them to take down their signs within two weeks.

Even businesses have gotten into the act to remove the eyesores.

In some areas, Chick-fil-A offered a free chicken sandwich to any customer who turned in a political yard sign the day after the election.

Officials with the chain said the idea was not picked up by any of its Florida restaurants.

However, in one North Carolina restaurant 3,500 campaign signs were turned in.

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Brilliant Idea!

Theft's a risk when there's a crowd

Stored under In the News on November 27, 2006 at 11:31 AM
Chances are if you've had a garage sale you've had something stolen or you've been worried about it.

Cheryl Burnett frets about it. She lives in east Mesa and recently had a sale along with neighbors on her street close to Brown and Power roads. She says every time she has a garage sale she's convinced someone will snatch an item when she's not looking. Cheryl laughs when she tells me she has never even had anything taken so she's not quite sure why she worries about it - but she does.

"It's a bit ironic because here I am willing to get rid of things for just pennies but at the same time I'm worried about people just walking up and taking stuff. I guess because it would be a violation and that would bother me," she said.

As you know, I go to a lot of garage sales and I occasionally hold them. And, yes, I've had something stolen, too. But you know what, even though I've had a few things swiped from my garage sales I'm still convinced the good outweighs the bad. After all, at garage sales we can meet new people, declutter our homes and make some decent pocket change.

And if a less-than-honest shopper shows up, there are a few things we can do to prevent stealing.

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Theft at garage sale sets a poor example

Stored under In the News on November 27, 2006 at 11:29 AM
I've been reading letters about all the Halloween decorations being stolen. This month at a garage sale, an antique was stolen. This was done by a grown-up.

How do we teach our children that stealing is wrong when parents do it and think it's all right?

I do hope this person doesn't have any children, so she can teach them to steal. If she does the right thing, she will return it and nothing will be said.

If not, I am sure she will be punished at a later date.

It doesn't matter if you steal from a child or a little old lady; stealing is stealing

[News Source]

A yard sale with a twist

Stored under In the News on November 16, 2006 at 11:12 AM
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. It's a morning meant for party-style shopping at Liz Bly's home in Yorktown, Va.

About 15 friends and neighbors sit on folding chairs and sofas, catalogs in hand, pencils poised to write notes -- maybe fill in an order form.

The women are not looking for stylish food storage containers or fancy cookware. Instead, they are there to learn how to use a "soil blocker" to get their garden seeds off to a good start.

Lisa Ziegler stands in front of them to explain and demonstrate several little-known gardening tools and products. For instance, there's the dibber, a T-shaped aluminum planting hand tool that's perfect for small bulbs, she says. There's also a multiuse trowel that digs planting holes, removes weeds and smoothes soil.

She also peppers her program with educational tidbits. She advises the women to consult their local Virginia Cooperative Extension office when they have plant questions, and encourages them to adopt gardening habits that benefit the environment and health of the Chesapeake Bay.

"This is 'edu-tainment,' " she tells the women at Bly's gathering. "Whether you buy or not, you take something away from this workshop."

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Having a garage sale will change your life

Stored under In the News on November 10, 2006 at 8:51 AM
“Having a yard sale is a reminder of every mistake you’ve made when you were shopping,” a friend recently told me.

At the time, I was in the throes of aching back, mental exhaustion and wondering if my sanity had, at last, left me. Yes, I was definitely recovering from having a yard sale.

The situation had become desperate.

It was either have a sale or move out to get more room for all the stuff I’d bought.

I couldn’t imagine how I had ended up with so much stuff until I remembered all the days I had come home with the car full of items I was certain we needed immediately and could not live without.

Or I had a car full of items on sale that I was sure I would never find at that rock bottom price again.

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You see junk, but Jerry Ritter sees a challenge

Stored under In the News on November 10, 2006 at 8:47 AM
When most of us want to relax we might read a book, see a movie or maybe even take a nap, but not Jerry Ritter. He grabs a chain saw.

"This one's driving me crazy. I've been working on it for two weeks now." Sounds odd that something that drives him crazy makes him relax but it does. Jerry goes to garage sales every Saturday morning looking for things that don't work. Then with a little elbow grease and mind bending he makes them new again. Kind of reminds me of the Island of Misfit Toys in the Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Christmas special. He gives new life to things many of us would give up on and throw away.

"I find all kinds of things to work on. Stuff like that fascinates me. And it keeps my mind going . . . it keeps me sharp."

Jerry, 72, searches for broken appliances such as microwaves and lawn equipment, clocks, watches and anything else that looks hopeless. I met Jerry recently at a garage sale in Mesa. It was a good sale where I snatched up two nice-size plants for $4, but I did pass on a box of junk for sale. Jerry didn't. He grabbed the box of miscellaneous items for $3. I was intrigued. I had to find out why someone would want a box of "stuff " - something most of us would've put in the trash instead of the garage sale. Turns out he saw materials he could use to fix his collection of items on his operating table in his garage.

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Garage Sale Antiques-An oxymoron?

Stored under In the News on October 26, 2006 at 10:42 AM

There is a quasi-new antique store in the Lincoln Lakes Area.

Garage Sale Antiques used to reside in the small garage adjoining Arnie Oldenburg's business, AOK Engines, on Highway 10. Arnie's wife Kathy, a long-time lover of antiques, opened the shop in 2005, but soon needed more space. There were other dealers from as far away as Detroit Lakes begging to rent space from her to sell their wares. She and Arnie then built a 40 by 80 foot building next to AOK Engines and Kathy, along with 15 other dealers, moved in this past summer.

The term "garage sale" gives the impression the buyer will pay a good price. The word "antique" does the opposite. It gives the buyer the idea they may pay dearly for an item. But Oldenburg and her dealers seem to be able to blend the two very well. The products available at Garage Sale Antiques are moderately priced, in good condition and the variety is wide.

Kathy began this business with her friend Linda Michurski because, as she put it, "I love antiques. Also, Arnie and I are very close and we need to interact often during the day. I doesn't make sense that we work miles apart. When we lived in Belle Plaine, we had the same situation. I was at home with the kids and he had his machine shop behind the house. We just have a hard time being away from each other for long periods of time."

The decor of Garage Sale Antiques is very "up north." The walls are knotty pine with old-time local advertising signs spaced sporadically. The dealers are individualized; some carry glassware, while others have dolls, furniture, books, pottery, toys, sports and hunting items, and so much more.

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Stored under In the News on October 19, 2006 at 9:34 AM
Having a yard sale used to be simple. Set up some card tables, price any old clothes, toys or kitchen appliances, put signs around the neighborhood, and open for business.

Today, South Florida homeowners need to fill out applications, pay for permits and read regulations before they get started. And that's assuming the local condominium or homeowner association allows the sales to begin with.

As collecting becomes more popular and buying cheap has entered the mainstream, more people have tried to emulate online flea markets like eBay by selling unused clothes, electronics and household items in their front yards.


To forestall such makeshift retailing, cities have begun to crack down by requiring permits and limiting the number of sales. Most cities also prohibit residents from putting any signs on public property to keep streets uncluttered for drivers.

Coral Gables resident Tony Martinez had to pay $25 for a garage sale permit this summer. Martinez and his wife, Angie Stephen, also had to ask nearby homeowners to put signs in their yards to guide potential shoppers through the neighborhood's winding streets. A couple of years ago, a city inspector removed signs the couple had posted along the street.

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Garage sales useful to declutter home

Stored under In the News on October 12, 2006 at 10:02 AM
It's amazing how much stuff American families can accumulate.

Over time, we end up with clothes and toys our children have outgrown, furniture we no longer want, bicycles that have long been abandoned and a whole assortment of other items that clutter the corners of our homes.

Sooner or later, most families realize that there is only one answer to this situation: a garage sale.

I don't know what Americans did before the invention of garages.

I know that the original idea of a garage was to provide shelter for one's cars. But over time, it's clear the real purpose of garages is to provide a venue for selling all those items that we no longer need or want.

It's free enterprise at its best.

We profit from getting rid of a ton of stuff and make a little money at the same time. The buyers benefit from getting bargains on items.

Such was the case last weekend at our garage sale.

Continue Reading.

Cher's garage sale

Stored under In the News on October 5, 2006 at 7:52 AM
Los Angeles.– In the market for spangled headdresses, sequined chaps, or fishnet hotpants? Aren't we all? That's why we'll be taking a road trip to Los Angeles this week to check out Cher's garage sale.

The iconic singer/actress/fashion victim will be unloading a variety of undoubtedly tasteful clothes, jewelry, objet d'art, and furnishings from her Malibu mansion, as she trades in her previous Gothic aesthetic for a "a Moroccan-Tibetan look."

But Cher's Naugahyde chaps and jaunty sailor cap aren't the first celeb cast-offs offered to the eager masses.

In 2003, Elton John famously auctioned $1.67 million worth of understated costumes and decor. Last year you could have picked up some creepy housewares at Tim Burton and Lisa Marie's post-break-up auction.

If you're lucky, you could even spot stars' ads on Craigslist from time to time.

But if your inner diva can only be satisfied with a Bob Mackie that's been up-close-and-personal with Cher's famous tattoos, you'd better get ready to start bidding.

[News Source]

Baby clothes or bayonets: Bargains abound at summer yard sales

Stored under In the News on September 19, 2006 at 8:50 AM
"Why did you take a picture of our sign?" That was a legitimate question. I was taking a couple of hours one Saturday morning to garner enough facts and quotes for a nice Pride feature on yard sales, so I guess my activities seemed a bit odd. I was tempted to tell her that it was my hobby, but better sense made me spare her and speak the truth.

I was also getting a last dose of summer. Garage Sale and hand-drawn yard sale signs are as sure a sign of summer as shorts and the aroma of sun block.

Every weekend I can count on seeing yard sale signs at the intersections and browsers braving traffic to reach front yards.

Most of the time I don’t find anything that particularly grabs my interest. Being single, I’m not in the market for baby clothes or children’s shoes, and I have all the glasses and dishes I need. Once in a while I do pick up a good book for almost nothing. For instance, I was walking down Oakvale Avenue for my Saturday morning exercise when I noticed a sale. I idly inspected the merchandise and found a mystery novel for 50 cents. Normally, I would have paid more than $7 for it.

Every shopper I interviewed last Saturday was looking for something in the same broad category, a bargain.

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Bargains abound at world's longest garage sale

Stored under In the News on September 11, 2006 at 12:02 PM
MOUNT VERNON -- Carla Lowe of Mount Vernon, and her mother, Trudy McClintock of Shelby, are veteran flea marketers and yard salers. But seasoned as they are, they had never seen the likes of their first Highway 127 Corridor Sale, also known as The World’s Longest Yard Sale.

This year’s event was the 19th annual, held Aug. 3 to 6. The 450-mile-long sale begins in Covington, Ky., follows Highway 127 south to Chattanooga, Tenn., then switches to the Lookout Mountain Parkway, crosses the northwest corner of Georgia and ends in Gadsden, Ala., after changing highways a few more times.

The Fentress County Chamber of Commerce in Jamestown, Tenn., is the event’s headquarters and lays claim to originating the sale in 1987 when its county executive came up with the idea. According to chamber literature, he wanted to prove that the area’s back roads have much to offer visitors and that the interstate highway system is not the only means of travel available.

Residents who live along the highways participate but vendors come from far and wide to set up in parks and open lots. Shoppers arrive from all over the country, and from other countries, as well.

"We drove 1,100 miles," said Lowe. "But we never got stuck in traffic jams. Highway 127 is four-lane and most people parked on the side of the road and walked."

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Cher to have "garage sale"

Stored under In the News on September 7, 2006 at 10:14 AM
Fashion icon and award-winning singer and actress Cher is clearing her Malibu, Calif., home of its Gothic contents and reshaping her life in a giant "garage sale."

Following a trend set by rock star Elton John, Cher is selling nearly 800 items, from stage costumes to gem-encrusted jewelry, works of art, furniture, and even a huge Hummer car, in an auction expected to raise more than $1 million.

"This is a lot more than a garage sale. Apart from the dresses and jewels, there are Old Masters and architectural drawings," said Darren Julien of Julien's auctions.

"She has a huge following. She is an icon. Her career in song, stage, and screen has spanned nearly four decades," he told Reuters as some of the items went on show in London on Monday, ahead of the sale in Los Angeles on October 3–4.

The sale is being jointly organized by Sotheby's New York office and Julien's of the United States.

Among the items on show are several dresses by star designer Bob Mackie, white and yellow gold rings and necklaces, and a book of architectural drawings by 19th-century Gothic revivalist Augustus Pugin.

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Garage sale is more work than profit

Stored under In the News on September 7, 2006 at 9:16 AM
The second load has been delivered to the Salvation Army store in Adrian. Today a friend is stopping to pick up a generous pile of stuff for the Rollin Baptist Church auction in October.

Although a few treasures are still left, I can now walk through the garage, vowing with every step, "never again."

That "never again" has been said before. In fact I believe in this column I said I would never endure the pains of another garage sale. So I lied.

You know how it goes. Things begin to pile up. You go to the grocery store for a box and begin to fill it and shove it into the corner of the garage next to the box of unsold merchandise from the last sale. Then there's a second box and more until the makeshift warehouse has the promise of raking in several hundred dollars. Wouldn't that be nice to help with the winter taxes or a plane ticket?

I don't know who has winter taxes of $138 or knows where to get a plane ticket for that price. That was my take on the two-day 2006 sale. Being a businesswoman, I suppose I should deduct the cost of the advertisement and the signs, leaving me with a round $130.

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Do you agree that they are more work than profit? Leave a comment!

Let signs point all way to sale

Stored under In the News on August 29, 2006 at 10:18 AM
OK, let's face it, going to garage sales isn't brain surgery, but finding them can sometimes be challenging. If the garage sale signs aren't placed just right, then we might have to call on our maneuvering skills or we'll be meandering aimlessly through neighborhoods searching for treasures. Where we put our signs is critical to a successful sale. Julia Hooper found that out the hard way.

"There were no other signs up when I put mine up, so I didn't think it'd be a problem," she said.

But it was.

Julia was having a garage sale recently in east Mesa. She posted eight signs at 6:30 in the morning, hitting all the major intersections near her home. Little did she know a neighbor would put up signs after her and take away some of her business.

I discovered such sign hijacking one Saturday morning while doing what I'm always doing on a weekend morning - garage saling. Julia's pretty pink neon signs caught my eye (I just love pink!). On the sign, the words "Garage Sale" along with an arrow were printed clearly with a thick stroke of a black marking pen. I turned left at the corner, planning on going to her sale by following her pink signs. But lo and behold, what is this I see before me just a block up the street? It's another type of garage sale sign. This one's made out of a cardboard box and has different colors. Now I've got a mystery on my hands. Did Julia run out of pink signs and switch to another type, or is this a different sale, thrown by someone else? After some intense investigations (read: a little bit of driving!), I was able to solve it.

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Community garage sale features 175 homes

Stored under In the News on August 22, 2006 at 2:54 PM
Summer's version of post-Thanksgiving Black Friday drew crowds Saturday to Hidden Valley as shoppers lined up after sunrise and began staking claim to their favorite items.

People could choose from about 175 homes to shop during Hidden Valley's 16th annual community garage sale.

"I usually look for gifts and sometimes books," said shopper Araceli Rodriguez, 15, a McQueen High School student. "Here the books are 50 cents and at a store, they're $4."

Pebble Beach Drive resident Bud Nixon said he sold most of the items he put out and that the event was a good way to clear his house before he moved.

"We had a chimnea, and we could have sold it 20 times," said Nixon, 62. "It sold first thing.

"It's a fun thing to do, there are lots of friendly people, and we got rid of a lot of stuff we won't have to move."

Coordinator Bud Johnson, an East Hidden Valley Drive resident who started the garage sale in 1990, said Saturday's event was a success and that its size increases gradually each year.

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There is nothing like a garage sale

Stored under In the News on August 22, 2006 at 2:50 PM
A few weeks ago our family had our annual garage sale.

If you have never had one or participated in one, it is really a great concept. The concept is really quite simple.

First, you gather up all of your priceless, "I can't live without it," "what was I thinking when I bought this," "it is too good to throw away," "we should keep it for the grandchildren," and "what is this" stuff you have accumulated over the years.

Second, you convince yourself that someone else might think they couldn't live without your precious items.

Garage sale shopping is smart and you can save a lot of money if there is something at the sale you could use. There are bargains galore.

It was fun watching and listening to people as they shopped the "bargains" at the King "something for everyone" garage sale.

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Part of yard sale etiquette is never sell underwear

Stored under In the News on August 15, 2006 at 9:48 AM
There are two kinds of people in this world; those who enjoy a good yard sale and those who don't; those who have yard sales and those who don't.

Have you ever wondered what separates a good yard sale from a bad one? Emily Post probably doesn't have a chapter on yard sales, but yard sale etiquette does exist. Yard sale etiquette goes both ways.

There are tips for the one having the yard sale and for those who attend. It's just amazing how tacky and thoughtless some people can become. The following are some tips on yard sale etiquette.

If you hang a yard sale sign up, put the date of the sale. Don't just put Friday and Saturday. If you never intend to take the sign back down, put the year on it as well. There's a "Moving Sale" sign hanging that I have passed once a week for at least six months. It gets me every time. I step on my brakes, my heart rate accelerates and then I remember it's the same old sign.

Never, and I do mean never, sell underwear at a yard sale. Just don't do it. Please don't make me have to spell out all the reasons why that is a bad idea. Suffice it to say it's in bad taste and a dead giveaway that you probably don't have good art or any other hidden treasures worth digging for.

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Thrill of the garage sale chase

Stored under In the News on August 9, 2006 at 10:13 AM
Last Saturday morning I woke up in the wee hours, put my daughter in her car seat and sped off to meet up with my friends Martha and Eric so we could play my very favourite full-contact sport: Hitting the garage sales.

If there's anything more thrilling than a hand-written "Yard Sale!" sign, then I certainly can't think of it. Before I can even stop the car, my heart's already pounding at the sight of a lawn full of my fellow shoppers pawing at what could be my greatest find!

It's all I can do not to yell "FIRE!" and send everyone running so I can crawl, commando-style, straight to the best loot.

If you don't see the appeal of a yard full of stuff somebody else doesn't want, let me share with you a little secret, won over many hours of sleuthing: Everything is not as it appears.

Take an old garden gate -- with a little love, it can be a wall hanging, a rack for potholders or a headboard.

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Garage sale strategy - Buyers and sellers know how to grab bargains

Stored under In the News on July 25, 2006 at 8:30 AM
Garage-sale season starts in the spring, but summer brings out the crowds looking for deals. The weekly search for stuff doesn't wane until September.

Saturday is the biggest day each week for sales, followed by Friday and Thursday. Though the yard sale business backs off a little on holiday weekends, most weeks typically bring far more than 100 sales, advertised in newspaper classifieds and on free-standing signs on street corners around the metro.

We tagged along several frequent shoppers last week to get their takes on how to find deals, where to go and what sort of items they seek in the exhausting, weekly hunt for bargains.

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How to Have the Best Garage Sale

Stored under In the News on July 18, 2006 at 9:36 AM

Make your garage sale sell!

What a way to spend a weekend, selling your good junk for real cash! Just put it out, set down and wait for the customers to give you their money...

Seriously, now. If you've ever had one garage sale, you probably look forward to the next with a mixture of dread and excitement. It's great to get rid of the clutter, and especially great if you can exchange it for some cold cash - but it's a lot of work! There is no way around it.

You can get tired, cold or hot according to the weather, hungry, thirsty and impatient in the space of a few hours... then the hours, which seemed perfectly acceptable when you wrote the ad, can drag on and on and on...

So the first rule of order is to make yourself comfortable. Cook ahead of time or plan on having sandwiches. Plan on sharing time "on the floor" with someone else. Never have a garage sale alone. You'll need someone else to take over while you eat or answer the phone or change into warmer or cooler clothing, but you will also need to take breaks without having to do anything.

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Garage sale advice from seasoned sellers

Stored under In the News on July 18, 2006 at 9:34 AM
Apparently, Friday is the new Saturday when it comes to holding garage sales.

That was the judgment of Jennifer Van Every of Royal Oak, who held a garage sale with her mom and sister last weekend.

"Friday is a good day," she said Saturday morning. "We made over $300 yesterday."

Van Every said she worked a Saturday/Sunday garage sale with her brother earlier in the year and it had not done as well.

Andrea Bader of Royal Oak and her mom, Patty Spate of Mount Pleasant, agreed that Friday was a good garage sale day. They said together they made about $300 the day before also.

In Berkley, Thursday was pronounced a good garage sale day. Mom-and-daughter Rebeccah and Shelby Behm, said they had their best day two days previously, with about 25 people, and only 20 on Friday.

Along with the theory that Friday is a better day to start a sale, these sellers had other advice for first-time or rusty sellers.

None of them placed ads in the classifieds, but all agreed that good sign placement is key.

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Garage Sale Gurus

Stored under In the News on July 12, 2006 at 1:15 PM
Garage sales are no stranger to east Idaho. Sellers want to make a few extra dollars off their old stuff. And buyers are looking for a little garage sale gold.

Reporter Ashli Kimenker followed two women who have been going out every Saturday for 18 years, to learn the tricks of the trade.

Dena and Siri have been friends for over 30 years and every Saturday they go shopping together. But these two women aren't mall rats, they are garage sale junkies.

Over their 18 years of "garage sale-ing" they have learned a lot, and today they shared some of it with me. Dena earned over a thousand dollars at her last garage sale and told me how.

Dena Ruffridge, garage sale shopper: "Just be organized, have everything priced, clean. People will buy your stuff if it's been washed and cleaned and it looks like something you would want to buy at a store."

Garage sales can be a lot of work, so why should someone take the time of hosting their own garage sale?

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Buyers, sellers need to map out a garage sale strategy

Stored under In the News on July 10, 2006 at 1:07 PM
Every Thursday morning, Jeanie Crittenden follows the signs, searching for treasure.

A self-described garage sale guru, she loves both the process and the prize — and during two decades, she has hit plenty of jackpots:

• A signed Eisenberg brooch purchased for a dime and valued at $350.

• A Louis Vuitton handbag for $35.

• A numbered Star Wars poster for $5, later sold to a specialty shop for $150.

• A Jiminy Cricket videotape bought for a dime and sold on eBay for $65.

And she has bought countless antiques, appliances, toys and designer clothing items at a fraction of their full price.

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'Live' signs boost garage sale bucks

Stored under In the News on July 6, 2006 at 9:17 AM
I've seen a lot of good garage sale signs. Big ones that you could never miss. Creative ones - a woman once attached a huge cutout of the Grinch Who Stole Christmas to her sign. You wanted to go to that sale just to see what she had to offer! I've seen professional signs, the kind you can buy pre-made at the business-supply store. But I've never seen the likes of the garage sale sign I saw the other day.

"Well, I see home builders do it all the time. So I thought I'd put him out there with a sign," says Gilbert resident Scott Simas.

The land broker decided to have his gardener skip the bushes on this particular Saturday and planted him on a street corner beckoning people to his sale.

Roberto Jorae didn't mind holding the sign at all, but he did say it was a new experience.

"This is the first time I've done this. But it's OK. I've got my water and even shade."

So, of course, this is one sale I just couldn't miss. I followed Roberto's sign and drove down the street to the sale. When I mentioned the unique garage sale advertising style to the homeowner, turns out I was spilling the beans to his wife. Oops!

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The high price of a garage sale

Stored under In the News on July 5, 2006 at 9:12 AM
"That's all you need in life, a little place for your stuff. That's all your house is: a place to keep your stuff. If you didn't have so much stuff, you wouldn't need a house. You could just walk around all the time." -- George Carlin

The house is stuffed with stuff. The closets a e basement is stuffed. The garage is so stuffed we had to rent a room for the extra stuff, and the room is stuffed too.

Too much stuff, I announced. We're having a garage sale. Every great retail fortune has to start somewhere.

Sam Walton started out with a single dime store. Bob Nardelli came to Home Depot from GE and pocketed $256 million in six years. How hard could it be?

Day One: I put an ad in the paper. I made some signs. I opened the garage door and was almost killed by the avalanche. I started sorting stuff.

There was lawn equipment. There were tools. There was lumber. There were piles of old clothes. There were dozens of carefully mislabeled boxes.

I hauled stuff to Goodwill. I hauled stuff to the curb. I re-shelved stuff to keep. I set out tables full of stuff to sell: baby clothes and baby beds, books, a ceramic cow, clocks, kitchen utensils and pots and pans, an old stereo with a dual tape deck. (One deck was broken, but hey, who listens to cassettes anymore?)

Continue Reading"That's all you need in life, a little place for your stuff. That's all your house is: a place to keep your stuff. If you didn't have so much stuff, you wouldn't need a house. You could just walk around all the time." -- George Carlin

The house is stuffed with stuff. The closets a e basement is stuffed. The garage is so stuffed we had to rent a room for the extra stuff, and the room is stuffed too.

Too much stuff, I announced. We're having a garage sale. Every great retail fortune has to start somewhere.

Sam Walton started out with a single dime store. Bob Nardelli came to Home Depot from GE and pocketed $256 million in six years. How hard could it be?

Day One: I put an ad in the paper. I made some signs. I opened the garage door and was almost killed by the avalanche. I started sorting stuff.

There was lawn equipment. There were tools. There was lumber. There were piles of old clothes. There were dozens of carefully mislabeled boxes.

I hauled stuff to Goodwill. I hauled stuff to the curb. I re-shelved stuff to keep. I set out tables full of stuff to sell: baby clothes and baby beds, books, a ceramic cow, clocks, kitchen utensils and pots and pans, an old stereo with a dual tape deck. (One deck was broken, but hey, who listens to cassettes anymore?)

Continue Reading..

Fake money being passed at garage sales

Stored under In the News on June 27, 2006 at 8:04 AM
EUREKA -- For two times in as many weeks people holding yard sales have been the victims of poorly produced $20 bills.

The Eureka Police Department said the first report was June 18 from a yard sale on the 2300 block of A Street and the second report was June 25 from a yard sale on the 1400 block of Sixth Street.

”The victims state that an unknown dark-colored Suburban type SUV pulls up to the rummage sale and a 12-year-old boy gets out of the vehicle and uses the fake bill to purchase a few items,” said Suzie Owsley of the Eureka Police Department.

Police are warning anyone who plans on holding a rummage sale.

”The counterfeit $20 are very poor quality with paper that does not feel real,” Owsley said.

[Contributed By]

Profits inspire yard sales

Stored under In the News on June 23, 2006 at 12:04 PM
A group of Marietta school friends has come a long way from selling 5-cent Kool-Aid along the sidewalk in the summertime and this weekend they provided an example of why many local people participate in yard sales.

Gillian Rossi, Ashley Hoff, and Laura Riley, all 15; Brooke Rossi, 13, and Emily Welch, 14, threw a giant yard sale Friday and Saturday and raised $507.

Bright sunshine and a soft breeze brought out plenty of bargain-hunters.

“I had this chalk board and I remember playing with it a lot when I was little,” Riley said. “It was hard to give up, but I finally put a price of $5 on it. This woman would only give me $3. She wouldn’t even pay full price, so I said, ‘OK, I really don’t need it anymore.’”

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Estate sales can be trove of unexpected treasures

Stored under In the News on June 23, 2006 at 11:57 AM
It's a busy day today for Angie Karakey. She and her partners are running a "store" of sorts in north Scottsdale. "When we first open our doors there's usually a line . . . maybe about 20 people long. They know there's something here they want - jewelry, dolls or quilts."

Angie is part owner of A Woman's Touch, a company that organizes estate sales. An estate sale typically involves homeowners who are selling their "estate" or their home and everything in it for various reasons. Usually it's held due to one of several reasons, or a combination of retirement, relocation, divorce, downsizing and death.

If you like garage sales, chances are you'll love estate sales. While garage sales are often held outside, estate sales are always inside and are full of unique items up for sale. "Estate sale contents should include furniture, household items, appliances, collectibles, everything. Estate sale means complete. Garage sale just means you're changing your décor or the kids have outgrown their clothes."

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Garage sales are a big part of retailing

Stored under In the News on June 13, 2006 at 10:14 AM
With Memorial Day crossed off the calendar for 2006, we're now into the prime season for what is one of America's biggest retail sectors, and its least understood.

Least understood, that is, in the sense that everyone knows what the form of retailing is, and has a pretty good idea of its importance in the commercial and cultural landscape, but no one can quantify just how extensive that importance really is.

That sector would be the garage sale.

Or yard sale, or tag sale, or rummage sale, the precise term depending not just on whether the sale itself is in a garage or spread out on a lawn or in a basement, but where in the country it's being held (the favored term can differ by region). For simplicity's sake, we'll stick to garage sale.

You can scour the Web and find plenty of advice on how to run a garage sale, and strategies on how to shop garage sales. Hard data and detailed history on garage sales, however, are hard to come by.

That's not surprising, given how widespread and decentralized the garage sale sector is. They're not run by companies, and there's no industry trade group, so there's no industrywide database to consult. While some municipalities or neighborhood associations require permits for garage sales, many (including Seattle) don't, so that avenue is out for measuring the extent of the industry.

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Garage sale gurus reveal their secrets

Stored under In the News on June 8, 2006 at 3:49 PM
Every Thursday morning, Jeanie Crittenden follows the signs, searching for treasure.

A self-described garage sale guru, she loves both the process and the prize - and during two decades, there have been plenty of jackpots:

*A signed Eisenberg brooch purchased for a dime and valued at $350.

*A Louis Vuitton handbag for $35.

*A numbered "Star Wars" poster for $5, later sold to a local specialty shop for $150.

*A Jiminy Cricket videotape bought for a dime and sold on eBay for $65.

And there are countless antiques, appliances, toys and designer clothing items bought at a fraction of their full price that fill her home and office.

"It's kind of an adrenaline rush," says Ms. Crittenden, a marketing assistant for a financial planner. "For me, it's just a fun and sometimes profitable hobby."

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Fluff your yard sale

Stored under In the News on May 31, 2006 at 11:54 AM
This weekend, front lawns across Canada will begin sprouting yard sales like mushrooms after rain. But gone are the days when it's enough to empty your closets onto the grass in the hopes of making a little extra cash. The lowly yard sale has become very big business indeed.

According to a recent article in The Wall Street Journal, about $4-billion (U.S.) is exchanged in the estimated nine million to 10 million such sales held in the United States every year. Take a look around your own neighbourhood and it will be evident that Canadians from Parkdale to Prince Rupert are in a similar sell-it-or-bust mentality.

What's driving the yard sale's newfound respectability? Call it the eBay effect: The giant digital marketplace has made casual buying and selling a worldwide phenomenon. Advice books (The Pocket Idiot's Guide to Garage and Yard Sales) and websites ( abound. Professional yard-sale bargain hunters troll city streets on weekends. With a marketplace this hot, how can you cut through the clutter and make the most of your sale?

You can make eBay work for you by checking out some of your items on-line to see what they typically fetch. Vintage pieces like rotary phones, portable record players and old typewriters are cool collectibles, as are fashion finds like tooled cowboy boots and seventies caftans.

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Yard sale bargains may be hazardous to health

Stored under In the News on May 23, 2006 at 12:28 PM
With yard sale season started, Health Canada wants to remind Canadians that some of those yard sale treasures may be safety hazards.

Safety laws do not just apply to new products sold in retail stores -- they also apply to second hand items sold at garage sales, flea markets and second hand stores. People selling used products are responsible for making sure that the items sold meet the requirements of the Hazardous Product Act (HPA). Of particular concern to Health Canada are items such as children's sleepware, car seats, baby gates, playpens and baby strollers.

Health Canada said that it was illegal to sell baby walkers in Canada, whether they were new or used and advise that people who have one should destroy the walker before throwing it out so that it cannot be used again. Another second hand item that Health Canada was concerned about, where children are involved, was second hand window blinds. The government agency said that extreme caution should be taken when hanging the blinds to make sure that the cords do not cause a hazard for children.

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Yard sale yields Civil War-linked find

Stored under In the News on May 23, 2006 at 11:47 AM
Monday, May 22, 2006 BY JERRY L. GLEASON Of The Patriot-News

A Civil War-related document that Herb Kruger rescued at a yard sale will find a home at the Centre County Historical Society in State College.

The framed document, which has been appraised at more than $500, recounts the Civil War service of David Love of Bellefonte, who served as a private in Company E of the 45th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry.

Kruger, who is president of the Historical Society of East Pennsboro Twp., had stopped at the yard sale in the township to pick up some items related to Enola Yard and the Pennsylvania Railroad for the society's museum. The woman asked him if he would be interested in the document, which is in a wooden frame measuring 29 inches by 35 inches.

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Bargain hunt: Garage sale tips guarantee success

Stored under In the News on May 17, 2006 at 12:21 PM
"You can tell a lot about a person by what they sell at their garage sale," 43-year-old Wynetta Wilson said early last Saturday morning. "What kind of books they read, what kind of music they listen to ..."

Wilson stood in the street next to her mother, Gloria. In the background, other garage sale shoppers dashed from home to home in search of a good deal.

"I can tell you, when I go to a garage sale, whether the inside of the house is clean or not," said Gloria.
The mother-daughter team comprises garage sale veterans. They've been rising every weekend for close to four years in search of anything they may need around the house. The pair doesn't always have a game plan, but on this particular day, Gloria wanted a stadium seat cushion. She found it by house No. 3.

"You're always looking for stuff," Wynetta said. "I collect old books. I am forever looking for things for the yard."

This garage sale actually was a neighborhood-wide event. Lafayette resident Charlene Morella organized it knowing regular garage sale shoppers would love the chance to knock out so many homes in one shot.

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Timing also is key to successful garage sale

Stored under In the News on May 15, 2006 at 12:17 PM
A garage sale can be an effective way to get rid of the clutter in your home and make a little money.

Planning and the right mindset can pull off a successful sale.

"Have a variety of things geared to people with young children, something to appeal to men and decorating things for the home, kitchen or bath for women," says Liz Thiner of Sioux Falls, S.D., a seasoned garage sale operator.

Everything is important, including the sale date.

People tend to have more money at the beginning of a month, so have the sale on a non-holiday weekend near a payday, such as the first or the 15th of the month. If you don't have enough stuff, ask friends, neighbors and relatives if they want a neighborhood rummage sale to drum up more business, Thiner says.

"The more stuff, the better the sale," she says.

Then advertise a lot, says Cathy Pedigo, author of "How to Have Big Money Garage Sales." Publicize items such as baby gear and toys collections, furniture and big-ticket merchandise.

Study other sale ads to see how they’re worded. If something jumps out at you, use it in yours, says Elizabeth Hagen, a Sioux Falls organizing expert, speaker and someone who has had numerous garage sales. Make your ad larger than others.

Decide on the sale's hours and stick to them. In your ad, discourage early shoppers by saying they'll pay double.

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Yard sale or bust: Looking to buy or sell? Here are a few tips

Stored under In the News on May 11, 2006 at 2:42 PM
Yard sale or bust: Looking to buy or sell? Here are a few tips Treasure aisles abound for secondhand goods What to do with the leftovers Here are tips for a successful shopping experience Secondhand can be second-rate for safety


Whether you're looking for items to replace things you lost to a tornado, vintage costume jewelry, or music equipment, you're not alone. Yard sales are a fun and interesting way to fulfill your needs.

Nona Brummett first got interested in yard sales after her home was destroyed in the 1999 tornado. It doesn't matter how much insurance you have, she said. Everything can't be replaced brand new.

"As you are trying to rebuild your home, you don't know exactly what you need or want. So my daughter and I started going to yard sales and picking up items to make do, until I got all the decorating ideas worked out."

Now, Brummett explained, she continues to seek out yard sales for two reasons.

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How to organize a mega-yard sale

Stored under In the News on May 9, 2006 at 2:39 PM
Yard sales are better in bunches -- and no one knows that better than the canny Michigan homeowner with too many old clothes, books and outgrown toys in the basement. Here are some ideas for whipping one up:

Get your neighbors excited about the project. Ask for their ideas and farm out the work among everybody.

Split the costs of newspaper ads, signs and maps among all families participating or charge a flat fee, say $5 or $7.

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Advertise, organize for a successful sale

Stored under In the News on May 9, 2006 at 2:35 PM
By Dorene Weinstein Gannett News Service

A garage sale can be an effective way to get rid of the clutter in your home and make a little money.

Planning and the right mindset can help pull off a successful sale.

"Have a variety of things geared to people with young children, something to appeal to men and decorating things for the home, kitchen or bath for women," says Liz Thiner of Sioux Falls, S.D., a seasoned garage sale operator.

Everything is important, including the sale date.

People tend to have more money at the beginning of a month, so have the sale on a non-holiday weekend near a payday, such as the first or the 15th of the month. If you don't have enough stuff, ask friends, neighbors and relatives if they want a neighborhood rummage sale to drum up more business, Thiner says.

"The more stuff, the better the sale," she says.

Then advertise a lot, says Cathy Pedigo, author of "How to Have Big Money Garage Sales." Publicize popular items such as baby gear, toys, furniture and big-ticket merchandise.

Study other sale ads to see how they're worded. If something jumps out at you, use it in yours, says Elizabeth Hagen, a Sioux Falls organizing expert, speaker and someone who has had numerous garage sales. Make your ad larger than others.

Decide on the sale's hours and stick to them. In your ad, discourage early shoppers by saying they'll pay double.

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Garage Sale 101: The early buyers get the bargains

Stored under In the News on May 2, 2006 at 3:21 PM
After a long winter, Battle Creek area residents are ready to get back on the garage sale circuit.

Nathaniel and Nancy Lussier learned that on Friday. They had prepared for a week to have a garage sale and were up early for the 9 a.m. start.

But people were ready to buy at 7 a.m.

As the Lussiers were bringing out boxes of items, more than one customer was already looking.

"One guy was picking out of the box as I was bringing it up," Nathaniel Lussier said.

"It was beyond crazy," his wife said. "There were a lot of people. I was just grabbing money."

As the dandelions spot Battle Creek yards, people around the city are beginning to haul baby clothes, old tools, books and video games onto makeshift tables for weekend sales, which allow them to clean out their basements and/or closets and make a little money at the same time.

The season may be just starting, but some people were in midseason form on Friday, shuffling through cloths racks and tables crammed with coffee cups and toys, and either grabbing a prize or moving on.

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Yard sale aficionado shares shopping tips

Stored under In the News on April 26, 2006 at 11:12 AM
Let's face it: the value of a dollar just isn't what it used to be. But you can make the most of that dollar by hitting yard sales.

When researching the best yard sale tactics and tips, I stumbled upon Tess Gerhart and found a gold mine of information. She is the queen of the best deals, the diva of dollar stretching.


Gerhart graciously shared some of her tips and tricks for getting the best bang out of a buck via yard sales and garage sales.

Be prepared

Pack a cooler with beverages and snacks, along with a backpack with an extra change of clothes for everyone on board.

Make sure you have toys and games for your children to play with along the way. You might also find some new toys on your travels to entertain them.

If your kids are old enough, get them in on the action.

"I usually give them a couple of dollars and once that's gone, it's gone. So now they know how to wheel and deal," said Gerhart.

Like you would do for your children, go with a certain amount of money and don't go over what you've budgeted. This tactic will also encourage you to spend wisely and seek out the best deals.

Go to yard sales with a buddy. Make a list of items each of you is looking for, then you hit one part of a neighborhood or area of town and let them hit another.

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Yard sale season is another sure sign of spring

Stored under In the News on April 26, 2006 at 11:08 AM
Furniture, dishes, clothes, books, bikes and baseball bats are spilling out of open garage doors all over town. It's spring, it's above freezing, it's yard sale season.

In garages and on driveways the sales are as much a part of summer here as mosquitoes and barbecues.

The 50-year-old cultural phenomenon sports its own regular "clip and carry" section in the classifieds. It's small so far but poised to explode as May arrives.

Some people throw yard sales because they need cash. Some want to replace old stuff with new.

The Kamiloses, a retired couple, are moving into a fifth wheel next week and heading south soon to search for a new home. They put the stuff of their Alaska life on sale this weekend and hoped to get rid of everything.

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You never really know what drives a sale

Stored under In the News on April 21, 2006 at 12:44 PM
If there's one thing I have learned about garage sales over the years, it's that anything goes. You never know why someone is buying something, and you never know what they'll use it for. Although sometimes you might have an idea.

I've seen people sell toilet paper at garage sales - can you believe that? OK, I'll admit it, I was the buyer of "bathroom tissue," but that's another column!

Let's face it, people who go to garage sales are very resourceful. Take, for example, the lady who bought all of my old jeans. She transforms them into vintage purses on her sewing machine. Cool! And at a recent sale I saw a woman buy 20 mismatched pieces of bone china for $1. She told me she breaks them and creates mosaic tile projects. Then there's the guy who bought part of a Halloween costume from me - one gory rubber foot. The matching foot had melted in our garage! I'm still wondering about that sale.

Then there was the time I bought something at a garage sale and the seller was so curious as to why I would want it. She was, well, let's just say a bit perplexed. To help you understand why I wanted it, I have to take you back to my travels. When I lived in upstate New York, I would often take the train to New York City for shopping trips. One day I was perusing the boutiques in Soho and bought my first souvenir, a 4-foot-tall iron candleholder that came in two pieces: the stand and the iron bowl on top to hold the candle. OK, so fast-forward to Arizona. When we relocated here, the moving company lost the top part of the candleholder. I was pretty sad. One of my favorite possessions was unusable!

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Door slams on big garage sale

Stored under In the News on April 19, 2006 at 8:25 AM
Grosse Pointe's Greatest Garage Sale, a tradition in the Village shopping district since the late 1970s, won't be happening this year.

The Village Association fund-raiser, which had been scheduled for May 28 and 29, fell victim to possible redevelopment of the city-owned parking deck that houses it, said Village Association spokesman John Denomme.

"We could not have the garage sale and possibly stand in the way of any shovels that go in the ground," he said.

"And we had no way of knowing when that would happen."

The parking deck, located near Kercheval between Cadieux and Neff, has been tied to several different redevelopment possibilities for the old Jacobson's building, which is now being renovated as the Kercheval Place retail, office, restaurant and condo project. The garage's future remains up in the air.

Another glitch in holding the garage sale is the repaving of a nearby surface parking lot, which is scheduled around the same time as the sale.

Because most patrons of the garage sale parked there, Denomme said, holding the sale while the lot was under construction would have created parking problems.

The cancellation of an eagerly awaited annual event that accounted for as much as 40% of the Village Association budget leaves the merchants group mulling new ways to raise funds, Denomme said.

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Spring draws out garage-sale crowd

Stored under In the News on April 18, 2006 at 11:09 AM
There's a horde out there that prowls the streets on weekends, searching for signs that flutter on poles, classified ads and Internet postings, and arrows pointing to bargains.

With any luck, you'll be one of their targets.

Spring has sprung, so that must mean it's garage sale season.

Garage or yard sales might not seem worth the trouble to some, but they can be a very effective tool for getting rid of clutter and making a little money -- if you do it right.

Holding a garage sale is just like opening a little store, says author John Schroeder, whose book Garage Sale Fever! was released last May.

If you think about it as a store, "that way you consider the display, the pricing, the traffic," he said.

"You have to consider how much merchandise you have -- just the factors a small store would have, you have," he added.

Advertising, traffic and large quantities of items are all critical to a good sale, but pricing is particularly important. People are looking for bargains.

"The key is just pricing things inexpensively," he said. "The goal is to get rid of stuff. Some people do hold it just to make money, but the two can work together."

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Company offers unique way to hold garage sale

Stored under In the News on April 6, 2006 at 12:03 PM
Hollywood Storage Center of Thousand Oaks is opening its door to neighbors who want to have a garage sale without using their own garages.

The Conejo Valley's largest self-storage center is inviting residents to sign up for clean, covered spaces to sell gently-used items at the Hollywood Storage Round-Up from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat., June 10.

In addition to featuring the community's largest yard sale, the round-up will include a celebrity estate sale by Flattery McGrady Concepts & Design, a barbecue by the Thousand Oaks Elks Lodge and free family entertainment including pony rides and live music.

The event will raise funds for Many Mansions' summer camp program for low-income children who live on Many Mansions' properties.

Community yard sale participants will receive a unit in one of the storage center's new buildings free of charge for 30 days. Space is limited and will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis with a completed sign-up form and a $20 tax-deductible contribution to Many Mansions.

Sign-up forms are available at Hollywood Storage Center, 3425 Old Conejo Road, Newbury Park, or may be downloaded from

For more information, call (805) 499-2700.

5 Myths of Garage Sales

Stored under In the News on March 28, 2006 at 9:49 AM
Myth #1: "Stuff at garage sales has all been used." Used items like porcelain, glass, silverware and clothing can simply be washed or dry cleaned. Many items found at garage sales still have the tags on them.

Myth #2: "Stuff is dirty."
Since people tend to pay more for nicer looking items, most sellers clean up their merchandise. If you can’t stand the dirt, bring rubber gloves, then wash your finds when you get home.

Myth #3: "I can get what I want online."
Online purchases often require extended waits, extra charges for tax and shipping, and even higher prices if you get caught in bidding wars.

Read the rest here.

4 Great Garage Sale Tips!

Stored under In the News on March 24, 2006 at 6:43 AM
The thrill of the hunt and that fabulous feeling of landing a great deal! That's what runs in the blood of garage sale junkies.

The season's nearly here and NBC 10's Tracy Davidson has some tips to help you bargain like a pro.

Garage sales and flea markets are the best places to hone your bargaining skills.

Here are four tips now from to help you bargain like a pro:

First and foremost -- do a little research!

You won't overpay or insult anyone with too low a price if you know what the going rate is for your must-have item!

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Sale! Sale! Sale!

Stored under In the News on March 23, 2006 at 8:10 AM
Garage sales soon will sprout as quickly as daffodils.

A garage sale can be an effective way to unclutter a home and make money. Planning and the right mind-set will help pull off a successful sale, experts say.

"Have a variety of things geared to people with young children, something to appeal to men and decorating things for the home, kitchen or bath for women," says Liz Thiner of Sioux Falls, a seasoned garage sale operator.

Everything is important, including the date for the sale.

People tend to have more money at the beginning of the month so have a sale on a non-holiday weekend near a payday such as the first or the 15th of the month, says the Web site

If you don't have enough stuff, ask friends, neighbors and relatives if they want to hold a neighborhood rummage to drum up more business, Thiner says. "The more stuff the better the sale," she says.

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Garage sales are blooming: Clean up while cleaning out

Stored under In the News on March 20, 2006 at 9:09 AM
There's a horde out there that prowls the streets on weekends, searching for signs that flutter on poles, classified ads and Internet postings, and arrows pointing to bargains.

With any luck, you'll be one of their targets.

Spring officially starts Monday, so that must mean it's garage sale season.

Garage or yard sales may not seem worth the trouble to some, but they can be a very effective tool for getting rid of clutter and making a little money in the process — if you do it right.

Holding a garage sale is just like opening a little store, says author John Schroeder, whose book "Garage Sale Fever!" was released last May.

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Husband's ashes sold at yard sale

Stored under In the News on March 15, 2006 at 8:27 AM

The Associated Press

EAST STROUDSBURG -- One deal she made at her daughter's moving sale woke Sarah Volpe with a start at 3 a.m. "It dawned on me. O, my God. I think I sold my son-in-law's ashes," she said.

Her daughter Jane Hanlon's husband loved eagles so much that when Brian Hanlon died of cancer three years ago, Jane had some of his ashes placed in a black eagle statuette about 10 inches high.

Hanlon left the eagle on the fireplace mantle with some of the items for sale, and Volpe said she had forgotten the statuette also served as an interment urn. Now she is trying to find a "very, very sweet" brown-haired woman who bought it for $30.

Volpe ran a classified ad under "garage sales" hoping the buyer would read it. Meanwhile, Jane said she doesn't blame her mother. "It was my fault I left it out. Do a lot of people sell their husband?" she said. "It's not really funny, but I've been trying to make a joke out of it all day."

Story via Centre Daily Times

Bargain Like a Pro

Stored under In the News on March 13, 2006 at 7:38 AM
BARGAINING IS ONE of those necessary life skills that so many of us lack.

Americans tend to be weak on this front because it's a skill we rarely use, says Reid Bramblett, a travel expert and founder of Reid's Guides. Sure, we bargain at the car dealership and during job negotiations. But for the most part, the price on the tag is the price we pay.

Unfortunately, this means we often overpay. And when traveling abroad, this weakness could be viewed as downright insulting. "It almost annoys the vendors," says Bramblett. "They would rather it be the proper social interaction."

Here are some tips on how to bargain with confidence:

  • Conduct research. Know what the going rate is for an item before you go shopping, advises Anna Wallner, co-author of "The Shopping Bags," a shopping guide. This will help you to fix a price in your mind of what you're willing to pay.
  • Let the seller be the first to name a price. You're at a disadvantage if you're the first to attach a dollar sign, our experts agree. After all, the seller might immediately agree, which means you've bid too high, says Bramblett.
  • Don't get attached. Appearing too interested in an item tells the merchant that he's going to make that sale whether he bargains with you or not.
  • Carry small bills and change. "For a seller, it's annoying when someone bargains you down to $1 and then pays with a $50 bill," says Randy Lyman, co-author of "Garage Sale Gourmet," a shopper's guide. Having a few small bills to pull out can give you leverage by setting a maximum price: "Gee, I only have two fives. Would you take $10 instead of $15?"

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Huge yard sale begins

Stored under In the News on March 10, 2006 at 10:28 AM
Perry’s downtown business community is gearing up for Georgia’s longest yard sale, expected to attract thousands of visitors from across the state this weekend, according to a local tourism official.

The Second Annual Peaches to the Beaches Yard Sale is set to continue through Sunday, stretching some 172 miles along the Golden Isles Parkway, U.S. 341.

Sheila Jones, executive director of the Perry Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, said she hopes Peaches to the Beaches will be a boon for local business.

Jones said Peaches to the Beaches was modeled after “The World’s Longest Yard Sale,” stretching along U.S. 127 some 450 miles from Kentucky to Alabama.

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Now is time to plan yard sale

Stored under In the News on March 3, 2006 at 10:03 AM
Late winter can be the perfect time to comb your closets and cupboards in preparation for a spring yard sale, according to John D. Schroeder, author of "Garage Sale Fever!" So now is when folks should start eyeing a house full of junk as a potential money maker.

Schroeder suggests sorting possessions gradually over several months, gathering unwanted items in one location.

"You can take a couple of weeks to price it, or price stuff as you find it," he says. "It doesn't have to be work if you string it out over a long time."

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Rummage sale manifests American tradition

Stored under In the News on March 2, 2006 at 7:37 AM
It's been a long time since my father and I opened up our dusty garage to the picking hands of our community.

Years ago, I'd slip rather snuggly into my purple Levi's. But when I saw they were dramatically above my ankles, I knew it was time to go our separate ways. My poor Levi's were going to a garage sale.

My dad and I sorted through crates of stuffed animals and Barbies that just weren't as cool as they used to be. They too would be joining my Levi's.

But this wasn't your typical garage sale. This one was Arizona's biggest garage sale.

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A good plan yields profit at yard sales

Stored under In the News on February 20, 2006 at 7:37 AM
Deciding to sell your unwanted stuff - anything from the snowboots you wore in college to the scratched frying pan your mom used for omelets - ought to be simple. But acknowledging that you'll never use these things again requires acknowledging the passage of time, a difficult thing in our youth-obsessed society.

John D. Schroeder, author of "Garage Sale Fever!," advises sorting your possessions gradually over several months, gathering unwanted items in one location. Late winter and early spring can be the perfect time to comb your closets and cupboards in preparation for a spring yard sale. "You can take a couple of weeks to price it, or price stuff as you find it," he says. "It doesn't have to be work if you string it out over a long time."

Pricing can be the trickiest step.

Yard-sale shoppers want bargains, so prices must be kept low. "People come wanting to spend a quarter or two dollars," Rosson says.

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Survivor Of Yard Sale Attack Vows To Forgive Gunman

Stored under In the News on February 16, 2006 at 9:19 AM
The sole survivor of a yard sale shooting spree is speaking publicly for the first time. The teen who shot her pled guilty last month to avoid a trial for murdering two people.

Debbie Strasburger was wounded. Her son and neighbor were shot and killed. You'd think she would be full of anger and hatred, but instead she said she is blessed and has a new appreciation for life.

Debbie was shot in the hand, head and abdomen. She no longer has full use of her right hand and she's blind in her left eye. She believes the only reason she survived was because of her son, "He came running down the hall, screaming 'Leave her alone.' I was still sitting up, for him to see me like that, he probably thought I was dead."

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Garage sale returns to VCC

Stored under In the News on February 15, 2006 at 10:59 AM
After a nearly two-year absence, the flea market formerly known as the World's Greatest Garage Sale returns to the Venice Community Center today.

For more than 10 years, Venice residents enjoyed attending this popular event at the VCC where fellow community members set up tables offering a wide variety of merchandise for sale.

From jewelry to linens, antiques to popular electronics -- shoppers could find it all at the World's Greatest Garage Sale. They could even stop for a hot dog at the concession stand and shop to tune of live organ music.

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Yard sales can be lucrative - even therapeutic

Stored under In the News on February 14, 2006 at 8:57 AM
Like so many families who find their homes overrun by clutter, we had fought back by staging a yard sale. Throughout that day, strangers and neighbors perused bits of our past - some trivial and some deeply nostalgic - offering a dollar, maybe five, to take possession.

It was cathartic. It was profitable. And it was much harder work than we'd expected.

Holding a lucrative and efficient sale takes planning, patience and a willingness to let go of the miscellany that clogs your basement or attic.

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Australia's biggest garage sale

Stored under In the News on January 27, 2006 at 11:34 AM
Sigrid Wilson's obsessive compulsive disorder meant she collected everything she saw. For five years, she could not even part with a paper clip or old bits of wood.

But with a little help, Sigrid is now preparing to get rid of everything she does not really need. It has been billed Australia's biggest garage sale.

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One's trash, another's treasure: Yard sales require planning

Stored under In the News on January 19, 2006 at 8:01 AM recently ran an article on suggested tips to having a yard sale. These tips including nothing out of the ordinary but its nice that other media is promoting garage sales and giving people advice as well. Everyone should have a successful sale, including buyers and sellers.

No midweek sales.

Lead the way. "Use directional signs with arrows to guide drivers. Good signage is key to a garage sale's success."

Give a good deal. "Check the retail prices of the items you plan to sell on the Web or by visiting local stores, and then knock around 80 [percent] or 90 percent off."

Write prices clearly on all items. "People will be less likely to buy if they have to ask, 'How much?'"

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Want a Louis Vuitton handbag for Rs 250?

Stored under In the News on January 17, 2006 at 2:26 PM
You can pick up a Ritu Kumar ghagra for Rs 5,000, a Louis Vuitton handbag for Rs 250 or an Esprit watch for a little over a grand at this garage sale. A not-so-common concept, the garage sale has been put together by sisters Tanya and Natasha Pratap.

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Court clears home owner after garage sale mishap

Stored under In the News on December 8, 2005 at 9:59 AM

One thing that many people overlook when setting up a garage sale is safety. While it may be unlikely to happen, people may get hurt at your sale and attempt to sue. This is certainly something that should be on your mind when you setup your sale and look for tripping hazards or other things that may get someone hurt.

In Australia though, the High Court cleared a woman of responsibility for an injury to one of her garage sale visitors. The woman broke a bone in her foot and originally was awarded more than $24,000 in compensation. However recently, the High Court ruled that the woman was not ultimately at fault.

Read More via ABC News
Read More via Advertiser Adelaide

Suggestion: Put up warning signs stating that you are not liable for any injuries.

More cities create garage sale ordinances

Stored under In the News on December 7, 2005 at 6:05 AM

Sleepy Hollow signs off on garage sale sign ordinance
The village of Sleepy Hollow, IL has begun placing restrictions on garage sale signs and number of sales each home owner can hold per year. The ordinance was unanimously approved on Monday that requires signs can not be larger than 6ft square and cannot be put more than 15ft off the pavement. Neon and motorized signs have also been prohibited. Have you ever seen a motorized garage sale sign?

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Burns votes to regulate yard sales
Burns, TN has also recently passed an ordinance to regulate garage sales. The ordinance allows only four 3-day sales per year and a permit must be obtained prior to each of the sales. In addition, each sale must be at least 2 weeks apart and can only be performed during daylight hours. When was the last time you saw a night time sale?

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Garage sale to pay for funeral

Stored under In the News on December 2, 2005 at 8:28 AM

Most garage sales are setup to either make some extra pocket cash or to simply get rid of the clutter throughout your house. However for a family in Australia, they are having to setup a garage sale to help pay for the funeral of their late father and husband. To add salt into the wounds, their house was burglarized the same day as he died. They hope to raise as much money from the garage sale to pay for the $2500 in funeral fees.

It certainly is a bad time of the year to lose a family member as well as having your house broken into. I can only hope that people will understand the reason for the sale and purchase an item that they may not have necessarily purchased otherwise. A small price to pay to help a family that certainly needs the help.

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More military ordnance found, removed by Navy bomb squad

Stored under In the News on November 18, 2005 at 9:55 AM

Garage sale are very similar to Ebay in the case where you can find almost anything you may want some time or another. It always makes me laugh when I pull up to a sale and I see a kitchen sink. It amazes me sometimes when I see something so abnormal attempting to be sold, but never the less, someone will likely purchase it if the price is right.

An elderly man recently shoppping at a garage sale came across one of these wierd items for sale. This time however it wasnt a kitchen sink, it was a practice round from the Navy. The bomb squad came out to review the ordnance and considered it safe to remove. The people who were selling the ordnance said they recently purchased it at another garage sale.

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Nettleton relaxing yard-sale rules for the week

Stored under In the News on November 17, 2005 at 8:03 AM

If you are lucky (unlucky?) to be living in Nettleton, Mississippi then consider yourself ultra lucky because starting today through Saturday, the town will allow everyone to have a garage sale without having to pay the normal $5 permit fee. It appears that the city is trying to turn this into a yearly event which they now hope to see over 900 yard sales over the next 3 days. In addition to $5 permit fee normally, the citizens are only allowed to have a total of 3 yard sales per year. This weekend however will be considered a freebie.

It seems like Nettleton, MS will be a great place to go bargain hunting. I can only imagine the cluster of sales will be outrageous, saving you time and money. If anyone here lives near Nettleton and plans on attending this event, please take some pictures so we may see how well the city took to the freebie weekend.

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Garage sale signs a nuisance for some cities

Stored under In the News on November 16, 2005 at 10:28 AM

Can you imagine paying a $500 fine for your garage sale sign? How about a $2000 fine? A total of 179 fines were handed out in recent months in Dallas where they are beginning to crack down on left over signs. A total of 110 signs where picked up over a recent weekend, 75 of them were from garage sales. Back in 1990, voters passed a referendum banning private signs in the public right a way. While opponents tried to fight it by telling them it would affect garage sale signs as well, 63% of voters still approved the measure.

It is unfortunate that there are sellers that cannot be responsible and pick up the sign immediately after their sale is over. Removing the sign serves dual purpose as it will officially close your sale and keeps your streets clean. There have been numerous times that I have seen the same sign on a street corner day after day on my way to work.

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Baby Strangled By Crib Parents Bought At Garage Sale

Stored under In the News on November 14, 2005 at 12:51 PM

Its a thought that may not cross the mind of many of the average garage sale shoppers, and that is safety. An unfortunate situation last month where a baby girl was strangled to death after her parents had in her a crib that they purchased at a garage sale. While the crib appeared new, the detectives discovered a small crack in the wood which allowed her head to slip through.

These types of stories, while unfortunate, hopefully help people understand that they need inspect their purchases, especially baby items. Its a fact of life that some items that are being sold, have been recalled and the sellers simply don't know so. Any baby item should be inspected through the website.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has the following guidelines to determine if an old crib is safe to use:

  • The mattress should be firm and tight-fitting. You should not be able to fit two fingers side by side between the mattress and the side of the crib.
  • There should be no missing or broken hardware or slats.
  • Slats should be no more than 2 3/8 inches apart (about the width of a soda can).
  • Corner posts should not be higher than 1/16 inch above the headboard and foot board. If longer, a baby's clothing could catch on the post and strangle the baby.
  • There should be no design cutouts in the headboard or foot board.

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