HIGH SPRINGS – Dozens of vendors and more than 200 buyers were on hand Saturday, Oct. 13, at the James Paul Park in High Springs to participate in the Chamber of Commerce Fall City-wide Yard Sale. The semi-annual event attracted sellers and bargain seekers from Williston, Hawthorne, Archer, Alachua, Ft. White and, of course, High Springs and the surrounding unincorporated areas.
The yard sale is a fund-raiser for Chamber events. Although it is unclear exactly when the Chamber began the project, Chamber President Sandra Webb said the Chamber has been sponsoring and organizing the event for at least the past 10 years.
Buddy and Cyndi Roban of Ft. White said this was their third year participating in the yard sale. “We sold quite a bit today,” explained Cyndi Roban. “They really like glass stuff,” she said and “they’ve bought quite a bit of tools from us today as well.”
John and Jennifer Pruitt, owners of Alachua Door Co. in Alachua, seemed like seasoned pros, although they indicated they were first time sellers. When asked if the event was a lot of work, John Pruitt laughed and explained his wife organizes a large consignment sale in Gainesville called “Just Between Friends” in early December.
“This was easy compared with that,” he said. “We’ll definitely be back to do this again,” Jennifer Pruitt said. “We enjoyed it,” she added. “Our biggest sellers here seemed to be knick-knacks and housewares.”
Michael Ryon, who owns Gypsy Palace in Gainesville, and lives in Alachua, was also a first-time seller. He said the “traffic was good. People seemed most interested in buying DVDs, women’s clothing, incense and other small items.”
Bob and Mary Fitzgerald, who live between High Springs and Ft. White, agreed there were a number of lookers. Mary Fitzgerald said, “Buyers were steady all day with a few lulls here and there.” The Fitzgeralds had small children’s stuffed toys, household goods, a Christmas tree and other small Christmas items for sale. “People were not really ready to buy for Christmas,” she said. “But we sold enough to want to do this again,” she said.
Another first-time couple, Patti and Terry Bird, who live just past the Santa Fe River in Columbia County, characterized the traffic as “sporadic” during the day. They brought furniture items, including a rocking chair, fishing gear, plant stands, toys, old bottles and antiques.” Patti Bird said sales were “good.” “We would definitely come back,” said Terry Bird.
Cheryl Thacker and Danny Gouge of Williston have been selling at the yard sale for the past four years. “We will definitely do this again,” said Thacker. Housewares and yard items seemed to sell best at their table.
Mason Marvel from High Springs was assisted by his daughter, Margaret Marvel, from Monticello. Mason Marvel said he has done the yard sale about three or four times. With a chuckle, he characterized the experience as “The best way I know to clean house…short of a fire.”
He brought smaller items they no longer used. Pottery, ceramics, knick-knacks, tools and various wood items like old orange crates that people love to use to create a shabby chic style were his specialty items.
“A lot of these items are sort of nostalgic for me,” he said. Pointing to a metal crate used to bring his two daughters’ cats back from Southeast Asia in 1972 he said, “We’ve never used the crate since, but it just brings back memories. “These items aren’t hard to part with now because I have no use for them anymore,” he said, “but the memories still linger.”
The High Springs Chamber of Commerce will schedule another city-wide yard sale for spring, said Sheila Smith, event coordinator. “Folks who didn’t participate this time can look forward to doing their spring cleaning and doing so next time,” she said with a smile.
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