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  • Kate Boyce

RoR: Random Online Rummage

Enjoying Our Rummage Sale All Year Round.

I'll bet you know that St. Peter's does a rummage sale twice a year. But did you know that we also do rummage all year round?? It's one of our better Kept Secrets but we're trying to change that! It's called the RANDOM ONLINE RUMMAGE SALE! And we would love for you to participate in it and tell your friends about it too.

It is something I invented at the start of covid when we had to cancel our spring 2020 sale because of the lockdown. Lots of people were home with plenty of time on their hands, and everybody started organizing their garages, basements and attics and finding things that they weren't using anymore. They all wanted to give it to me for the rummage sale. I have a nine hundred square foot house, so no place to store all that stuff, and I didn't know when we would have our next sale. (Who knew it would be 2 years!)

BUT I also knew that all the groups that we traditionally give our profits to, things like food cupboards and shelters, were more in need of it than ever before! So, I wrote to my wonderful group of customers and reminded them that I promised them not to bother them more than just twice a year but asked if they would want to OPT IN to something that could help in the meantime. God bless them, many of them did! I called it random online rummage or RoR.

I didn't know how much I would be given, or what it would be or how often it might happen. It started out with a tent, a ladder and a camp stove. One of my friends sent me pictures of these things that were in her garage that she was never going to use again. I sent out an email, asking if anyone was interested and would they get back to me. When they did, I put them in touch with my friend. And they had a contact less exchange. She left the ladder at the end of her driveway and somebody left money in her mailbox. It was all pretty covid safe and everybody was happy! It turns out that people seem to have liked it. And people don't always have stuff to offer when it's exactly the right time for a sale. Someone might be moving or downsizing. And it's May and we're not going to have another sale until October. But they really want to help the causes we serve. So, we do random online rummage. It has been ongoing since the start of the pandemic and has been a pretty successful fundraiser for our Outreach Ministries. Plus, it helps keep good items in useful circulation and out of landfills. And it's helping people to keep their houses neat and organized while helping their neighbors at the same time. I love a win-win!

You could opt in and try it on for size. But if it's not your cup of tea let me know and I'll happily take you off the list. One thing you should know is that the name of the object will always be on the subject line for instance: random online rummage-child's bicycle. That way you know if you don't want kids bike you can just delete the email without even opening it. I try and make it as unobtrusive as possible. Each email will also tell you what town the item is to be picked up in so you know if it's convenient for you. And if the donor happens to be somebody at the church, I have often done an exchange at coffee hour 😉

Obviously, this system only works because people donate stuff to us. That is something else that you can do. Got that bike that your kid is outgrown? The gadgets you collected for the hobby that you no longer do, or the materials for the Home Improvement project that you just didn't get around to? All of this could get out of your way, be a wonderful find for someone else and help support our church all at the same time. To join either side of the equation contact Kate Boyce

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