Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Adirondack Family Activities: Warrensburg Garage Sale

Warrensburg hosts the 33rd annual “World’s Largest Garage Sale” this weekend where over 100,000 people will find treasures from toys to antiques. Held the last weekend before Columbus Day weekend, this year’s “World’s Largest Garage Sale” will be September 29-30, 2012.

Last year when my family attended the garage sale we were not prepared for the magnitude of the event. I’ve taken my kids to tag sales before where I’ve given them their own money, allowing each to search for treasures. Never in my mind did I imagine so many tents in one location. The tents start at the edge of town and continue along Route 9, crossing the Schroon River. The event is very well organized and the streets are monitored making it easy to cross the Main Street (Route 9).

Lynn Smith, Event Coordinator and President of Warrensburg Chamber of Commerce says, “I just received six more vendor applications today. The event grows every day. We are up to about 180 booths and that doesn’t include the 500-600 individual garage sales around town. There will be plenty of food vendors with the hours generally running from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm daily. Some people do get here early. It is all individual.”

Smith encourages people to leave their pets at home as the streets are often crowded with treasure seekers.  Smith says there also will be parking available at the Warren County Fairgrounds for cars and RVs. As in years past, there is free transportation that leaves the fairgrounds every 15 minutes all weekend.

I feel unprepared as I watch people pull wagons, push empty strollers and even grocery carts. I look at my kids and let them know that whatever we buy, we will be carrying. A lot of the Main Street vendors sell larger items like furniture and other antiques. The side streets host smaller vendor booths as well as individual tag sales.

With so many people coming to Warrensburg to find treasures parking has been restricted in certain locations at the request of the fire department in order to safely navigate emergency vehicles. There will be no parking on Emerson Avenue, the north side of Library Street to James Street, the north side of Stewart Farrar Avenue and Hackensack Avenue, and no parking on 2nd Avenue.

I am always looking for a few specific items at a garage sale, though I always seem to walk away with items not from my list. Searching for that elusive item is most of the fun for me. I can always turn to eBay, Craig’s List or Freecycle for an item I can’t do without. For now, I’ll continue to pick though boxes and crates.

We attend the last day of the Warrensburg Garage Sale and stay toward the closing of the event. As vendors pack up to leave, they often leave boxes marked “free” on the edge of the road. My children look on with horror as I browse the streets for anything worthwhile. Yes, I do use the free wooden teacart, which doubled as a wagon for the rest of the family’s purchases. As the saying goes, “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure.”

photo used with the permission of AdirondackFamilyTime.com.

Diane Chase

Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.

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