Photo Contest entry by Red Fern Vintage
Basement of farm house estate sale in Connecticut
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Entries being accepted. Voting ends June 2. More contest info.
A Goodwill warehouse in western New York State has received a piece of pottery with a note saying it may be of prehistoric origin. The 7.5-inch tall vessel, with a “fluted opening and wartlike protrusions” arrived with a pencil-scrawled note saying it was “Found in a burial mound near Spiro Oklahoma in 1970.” The piece, which briefly appeared on Goodwill’s online auction site, receiving a bargain bid of $4.99 before the sale was halted, was dropped off anonymously. If verified, the piece will be duly sent to Spiro Mounds in eastern Oklahoma, an archaeological site inhabited by Native Americans for some nine millennia.
I just looked up “ancient artifact” in Garage Sale Rover. No results found. Ill have to try again next week.
Chris Janota, Garage Sale Rover
Yesterday the rain showers got the best of the garage sale plans across most of the country. Here in St. Paul I had sales dotted all over my Garage Sale Rover map but I retreated with my ambitious route plan and stopped at two nearby church sales, making a safe bet.
This got me thinking later, could this have been a missed opportunity to sniff out bargains? Will many of these planned garage sales be canceled or postponed due to the bad weather? No doubt much preparation and advertising have been invested in their yard sale so it is in a hosts best interest to go forward. Rarely do garage sales get cancelled. Unless tornadoes, severe thunderstorms or hail are predicted, and predicted with certainty, there may not be a better plan of action for them.
Should your treasure hunting plans be impacted by weather? Is it worth it to simply put on boots and raincoats and take advantage of those garage sales that are open? No doubt most casual garage sale shoppers, the browsers (the ones who melt in the rain, the oh so “Wicked Witch” of the land of Oz, not really, but the image is oh so Kansan!) will stay home until the skies are more blue and less cloudy. In my more aggressive garage saling days I found a rainout would create a royal treasure seeking opportunities! And garage sale hosts are ready to accept almost any offer before deciding to call it off. It’s a great time to pull out a “Ill buy it all for $$,” or ”If I buy these will you throw in these two?” Its not about taking advantage of sellers– it’s about staying ahead of your competition ( Other dealers looking for the same thing as you) and giving sellers an option before packing it up. The tips you find listing on the Yard Sale Shark have extra impact.
But just maybe the biggest benefactors in a rainout are thrift stores. Garage salers shoppers head indoors to the safe warm dry space of the thrift store. And hosts perhaps dispirited by the response of their sale pack it in and run for the donation center. Lines to my local Goodwill donation center is backed up today.
Garage Sale Rover Photo Contest entry by Jodi Meadows.
Church rummage sales are the BEST! Not only do you find great bargains but if you’re lucky, you can come across some real gems, like this assortment of bowels. I got four small bowels for only $1.00. Found at Holy Spirit Lutheran church in Kirkland, Washington. God bless the little old ladies who run these sales…
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Chris Janota, Garage Sale Rover
Last week, hundreds of bargain hunters descended upon Geneva, Illinois just west of Chicago, for the city’s annual citywide garage sale. About 150 homes hosted individual garage sales, and shoppers drove from sale to sale, securing deals on secondhand goods that might have otherwise ended up in the landfill or languished in storage. “People look forward to the event, it gives them a chance to meet their neighbors and brings a sense of community”… Said Laura Rush the Communications Manager who organized and hosted the first annual city wide garage sale sponsored by the Geneva Chamber of Commerce.
Want to organize a citywide garage sale in your own community? We offer you these step-by-step instructions to get started.
1. Find a Sponsor
Bring the idea of a citywide garage sale to your city, a local nonprofit, chamber of commerce, community organization or neighborhood group and see if they are willing to sponsor the event.
The first question the group may ask is how much money will it cost to coordinate the citywide garage sale?
To ease concerns about funding the event, Rush recommends charging a small registration fee to residents signing up to host sales at their home; Geneva charges $20 per house. The revenue will pay for the costs of organizing the event: purchasing ads and printing maps of the sales.
The sponsoring organization will, however, need to dedicate some of its staff time to event coordination that won’t necessarily be covered by registration fees. Garth Schultz, environmental analyst for the city of El Cerrito California estimates that El Cerrito’s city staff spends about 25 hours organizing each semi-annual event, for a city of 25,000 residents with 65 garage sales per event.
It is important that the garage sale has a lead coordinator – one point of contact to plan and execute all event logistics, Schultz says. That organizer may be staff from the sponsoring organization or an enthusiastic volunteer from the community, like you.
2. Sign up the sales
Once you’ve found a backing organization and designated a lead organizer, you’ll need to create a registration form to sign up residents to host garage sales at their homes. The registration form can be a printed copy or online, but it should collect such information as the resident’s name and contact information, the street address of the garage sale and a brief listing of any special sale items to interest shoppers.
To find garage sale hosts, send out the form through city or community newsletters and email lists and post the form on popular local websites and community bulletin boards.
While each community is different, Schultz has found that 65 is a good number of sales for El Cerrito’s citywide garage sale. When the city hosted the event once a year, over 120 sales would sign up, spreading shoppers thin over too many garage sales. Geneva‘s first annual turnout of 150 was a spectacular turnout for their 24,000 population.
3. Spread the word
To find shoppers for your citywide garage sale, you’ll want to promote the event through avenues that reach avid garage sale shoppers best. Use registration revenue to purchase ad space in popular local newspapers or websites, but don’t forget about free means of advertising: local bulletin boards, publications’ community calendars, press releases, newsletters and Craiglist.org.
Schultz also suggests asking garage sale hosts to help publicize the event, posting signs in their neighborhood or placing their own free ads on Craiglist.org or other websites.
4. Draw up directions
The Geneva City Wide Sale uploaded all their listing to Garage Sale Rover to have them appear on the free mobile app. It was a useful tool for shoppers to view and organize a route and get voice guided directions from sale to sale. Rover can help you too! When you upload all your city wide sales to Garage Sale Rover your listings will appear on our free iPhone and Android app, your online google map and a pdf map. You can distribute these maps to garage sale shoppers by sharing the online link and by printing and distributing the pdf map throughout your community.
5. Ask for feedback
On the day of the event, stop by a few of the garage sales and gather information from the hosts that can help improve the next citywide sale: How many shoppers did they receive? Did the shoppers come all at one time or was there a steady flow throughout the day? Where did the shoppers hear about the sale?
Garage Sale Rover is a free mobile app for finding garage sales and estate sales available on the iPhone App Store and Google Play.
App aims to be become the ultimate garage saler’s tool.
SAINT PAUL, MINNESOTA – In light of the current uprising in mobile apps and a growing surplus of stuff due to housing downsizing after a 20 housing boom, Navigation App , a company based in Mendota Heights, Minnesota, officially launched their free app Garage Sale Rover for garage sale fanatics on May 1st, 2012.
Garage Sale Rover features a map with garage sales, yard sales and estate sales in a user’s area. Chris Janota a seasoned garage saler who founded the app owns and developed Garage Sale Rover. Janota came up with the idea for the app because garage sale hunting is inherently a mobile activity so he focused his effort to create what he calls “the ultimate garage sale tool.” With gas prices near record levels the app offers features that help users spend less time on the road and more time at garage sales. “After you experience the voice guided turn-by-turn Navigation, Route Optimization and Neighborhood Preview features you can’t do without them.”
Janota is a long time eBayer, Amazon Marketplace seller and resale store owner who frequently garage sales to generate inventory for his businesses. “When time is precious on Saturday mornings, serious garage salers want the garage sale source that offers the most sales to ensure their not needlessly driving too much and missing out on treasures. “
Garage Sale Rover offers the nations largest source of garage sales. They compile U.S. listings from Craigslist and 350 newspaper classified services. “Many of our sales are added by our users,” he added. If you are preparing your Saturday morning route or you’re organizing your city-wide garage sale you can go to our website to quickly add sales in bulk to Rover.” They accept sales through express form on garagesalerover.com.
Contact: Chris Janota
Founder and developer, Garage Sale Rover
If there is one feature Garage Sale Rover offers that is overlooked and under used it is Map-a-Sale found on our website. Map-a- Sale allows a user to quickly add additional sales to the app when they are not included in our database. Supplementing the map with sales from other sources can help you plan your complete route and is a great contribution to the garage sale community.
Adding a sale requires a simple copy, paste, preview, confirm. Then presto! Your sale is added to the database and will appear on the app. Several sales can be added in just a minute. The magic of the form is in the parsing of the address and date of the sale. That data is parsed out of the body of the ad for you so fewer fields are required for entry.
See it in action in this 1 minute tutorial:
Steps: To Map your sale just go http://www.garagesalerover.com. Reduce the size of your Map-a-Sale window so it appears along side the window you are obtain garage sale data from. Simply copy the data from your source and paste it into Map-A-Sale.
Most of the fields are optional. Only Description and City are required. The form will parse the date and location data from the Description