Monday, October 10, 2011

Town-Wide Tag Sale

We've lived in our county for ten and a half years now.  We started off living in a small townhouse in the county-seat of our county.  It's a "small town" that keeps sprawling... to the point of being a little more congested than I like.  I appreciate that town, though... since that is where I have to shop at Home Depot, Joann's, Michaels, Target, Costco, Kohls, Outlet Mall, etc.  I plunk a lot of money down in that town.  But we were happy to have moved a little further "out there".... the edge of civilization, as I call it.  We lasted two years and one month in that first town... just long enough to not cause crazy tax problems when we sold the townhouse.

We moved two "small towns" west... to a town I loved (I'll call it PV).  We moved into a typical housing development.  I loved that house... it was a great starter home for a young family... lots of close neighbors.  Most homes looked the know the sort... you never had to ask your neighbors where their powder room was, since you had the same house!  :)

It was a new neighborhood, yet, we were a short 10 minute walk from "downtown"... a small town.  One with a cool-looking stone building as a library;  with the "town hall" on Main Street;  with tree-lined sidewalks; with nearly-hundred year old homes and storefronts that are mingled antique shops, old-time hardware store, coffee shops and family-owned restaurants.

(1900s... buildings are still there today)

This PV town threw the absolute coolest parades I've ever seen.  The Fourth-of-July parade is an hour long... filled with emergency vehicles from every small town nearby and every Boy Scout and Girl Scout troop out there.  Families always had their same location to stake-out while waiting for the parade to begin... with bags in hand to grab all the candy being thrown.  (Our favorite placed became the little wall in front of the above-mentioned library.)

(Yep, a John Deere... love small town parades!)

We moved away from that particular small town, not because we disliked it... but quite frankly because we outgrew the house, and the type of home/yard we desired couldn't be found at our budget-range within the town limits.  So, now we are yet another town further west.  :)  Much much much smaller... and we live about 2 miles north via dirt roads, so we don't have quite the small-town connection here just yet.  I'm still a "PVillager" at heart, but our new town has its own quaint feel too.  Who can beat a Post Office with three parking spaces and almost never a line?  It has what it needs:  a small store, two restaurants (one small and one fancy), one gas station, a fire station, a bank, a community center, a school, a dentist, a doctor's office, a town hall, several churches.

I love this part of the county.  It's filled with these old small-towns.  Some are so small you better not blink when driving by (ours has one major intersection and that's mostly it)... some are bigger and are getting their first Harris Teeter (big news there!)  But alas, the small town feel is just perfect.  Most of the full-time employed residents of our towns work in DC or surrounding crazy-busy suburbs, only to return home to a small town.   

Oh, did I mention I love small towns.  LOVE them!

Anyhoo... that leads me to a tradition that started about 8 years ago in PV.  The Town-wide Tag Sale.  Yes... TOWN-WIDE.  

Um... it's a serious holiday for me.  It goes on my calendar as soon as the next year's dates are announced.

My sister drives four hours every year to come along and find treasures.

It's AWWWWWWWWWWWWE-SOME (imagine that being said all singsongy like Oprah).

When I ask friends around town, "Are you going to the Tag Sale?", I just about fall over when they tell me they can't go due to X's ball game or Y's practice.  

Um.... that's understandable, ... I guess.  But seriously... I plan WAY ahead.  I locate a babysitter (this year:  my dear brother-in-law, Tim and my husband, Mike) and I'm out the door at 6:45am!  There is nothing that will halt this lady when it comes to a town-wide tag sale that is just 10 minutes away.  Even a cold won't halt us... my sister had a miserable cold and still drove 4 hours away to make it this year!

I had my supplies at hand:
 Large tote (the Thirty-One Expand-a-Tote Day Extender this year) at the ready for stuffing,
 a wad of cash in my pocket,
keys in another pocket, 
sunglasses on, 
comfortable shoes on my feet, 
back-seats folded down in the Sequoia, 
and a good-nights' sleep.  :)

We have our plan of attack:
1.  Hit a few big "Off Main Street" sales first.... at 7am, when most sales begin.

(we hit this sale first every year now...she owns a boutique/antique store and this sale has the spillover... I got a dresser here this year)

2.  Park at one side of town.

3.  Take the tote and walk through town on one side, come back the other.  (Fortunately there is a 7-11 at the other end of town for a quick snack and potty-break.)

(from the Tag Sale website)

4.  After doing Main Street and emptying our bags, we hop in the car and hit all the town neighborhoods and side streets.  

(Borrowed from the mayor's FB page... the set-up at Town Hall)

5. Come home when fully exhausted... this year, it was 3pm.

6.  Take a nap.

Next post:  My Tag-Sale Goodies!


  1. How does one get invited to come to this sale? It sounds awesome!

  2. We have room, Kris! C'mon down!


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