CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- For Charleston bargain hunters, the day has arrived: The Old Colony East End Yard Sale, 23 years old and now bearing the name of its sponsor, runs from 8 to 2 on Saturday.
"It's definitely the largest yard sale in the state," said Ric Cavender, executive director of East End Main Street. "We're doing research now to see if it's the biggest one in the east.
More than 80 East End residents have registered to hold sales in their own yards, Cavender said, and non-residents snapped up all 43 booth spaces in the parking lots of the Kanawha County Board of Education and the West Virginia Education Association within a week of the moment they were first offered.
"We're talking about adding more non-residential spaces next year," he said.
"I think, inch by inch, it gets bigger every year -- not just locally but it's become a regional event. The reach gets larger every year.
"Last year I talked to woman who had flown here from Missouri. She had read about it and got a room. She came here just for the yard sale."
Some parking is available at the Old Colony Realtors office at 1205 Virginia St. E, and at other private lots that offer spaces to the public during the yard sale. Otherwise, visitors have to find spots on their own along the street. Many come early to be ready when the sale starts at 8 a.m., he said.
You can find a color-coded map online at charlestoneastend.com, or pick up a paper copy at Old Colony Realtors. The map also appears on Page 2C of today's print edition of the Gazette.
While folks will find the usual yard sale fare -- used clothing, furniture, tools and housewares, "people sell new stuff as well," Cavender said.
"The most interesting thing I saw, several years ago someone had an alpaca in their front yard.
"People come out and play the fiddle in their yard. They set up and play music. It's not just a sale, it's a community-wide celebration, and one of our biggest events each year."
Reach Jim Balow at ba...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5102.