Ready to rummage? Beloved fundraiser returns to Eagle
The Rummage Sale of Eagle County returns Sept. 13-15 to the Eagle River Center
Donation Do's and Don't'sIf you are unsure about whether an item should be donated, ask yourself these three questions:
- Is it clean?
- Is it in good condition?
- Does it work?
- If the answer to any of these questions is no, then the item has already lived its best life. Please don't drop it off for the sale, because donated items that cannot be sold end up costing the sale money for disposal instead of raising cash for local nonprofits.
Items that are in clean, good and working condition that the sale does accept include:
- Sporting goods
- Small appliances
- Home Decor
- Small tools
- Children's clothes
EAGLE — Some traditions are simply too good to let go — the fall community rummage sale in Eagle County, for example.
For 53 years, the Eagle Valley Community Fund Rummage Sale took over the former Battle Mountain High School site at Maloit Park. It was a massive fundraiser for local nonprofit groups that featured everything from china knickknacks to camping equipment with lots of clothing and sporting goods thrown in the mix.
But last year it looked like the popular event had run its course when Eagle County Schools informed the sale’s organizers that it needed to raze the decrepit building to make space for modular classrooms needed while Vail’s Red Sandstone Elementary was renovated.
But a group of local volunteers simply wouldn’t let the tradition die and they retooled and renamed the event and the fundraiser is back for 2019. The Rummage Sale of Eagle County will return to the Eagle River Center at the Eagle County Fairgrounds for its second year Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 13-15.
Sale organizers began collecting donations in August and will continue for the next two weekends before the sale.
“Collections are going pretty well. Of course we only have two collection sites this year when last year we had five,” said sale organizer Rebecca Kanaly of United Way of Eagle River Valley. “It’s hard to tell how much inventory we have because it can be deceiving. Last year we were using storage units and this year we have a whole warehouse. The warehouse is getting full, but I think it can get even fuller.”
Donations can be dropped off between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 31, and Saturday, Sept. 7, at FirstBank of Avon at 11 West Beaver Creek Boulevard or at the rummage sale warehouse, located at 38 Alpine Ranch Road, south of the Eagle County Regional Airport.
Once the collection effort is done, the next big challenge launches Monday, Sept. 9, when volunteers move everything from the warehouse to the Eagle River Center.
“Right now we are definitely trying to advertise not just the sale, but the set-up on Sept. 9,” Kanaly said. “Monday will be a big moving day.”
After the inventory is moved to the Eagle River Center, volunteers will set up display areas and make sure everything is priced. It will take a lot of hands to get all that work done, but luckily there are 52 different local nonprofit groups who have signed up for work shifts at the sale. As always, when the sale is completed, the proceeds will be distributed to the various nonprofits based on volunteer hours worked.
“The nonprofits have done a great job of sending new volunteers who have never worked for the rummage sale before,” Kanaly said. “Plus we learned a lot of lessons last year, so the volunteer experience is a lot easier this year.”
She noted anyone interested in helping out can visit the event website and sign up for a shift. The list of nonprofit organizations can also be found on the website.
Along with the various local volunteers, Kanaly noted that a nine-member group from AmeriCorps has been putting in lots of work for the rummage sale.
“We have had that entire team every Sunday and they are a huge help and they will be helping out right up until the event,” Kanaly said.
Smaller but still mighty
Last year The Rummage Sale of Eagle County netted $34,000. While that was considerably less than the average $120,000 collected at the Maloit Park event, Kanaly said the nonprofits who benefitted were still thrilled to have the opportunity.
“There were agencies that thought they would get nothing, so while it was less than it has been in recent years, I was so pleased that the agencies that received funding were relieved and very happy,” Kanaly said.
The 2019 Rummage Sale of Eagle County will open at 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 13. The entry fee is $10 for opening night. On Saturday, Sept. 14, and Sunday, Sept. 15, the entry fee is $1 and on Sunday everything at the sale is half price.