GREENFIELD — The sign was hung just in front of the cash box and to the side of a tray of trinkets: “No reasonable offer refused.”
Members of the Greenfield Community Choir weren’t about to play hardball with shoppers during last weekend’s Old National Road Yard Sale; they were out to make a buck off bargain-hunters, even if it meant knocking a few pennies off the price.
The annual sale, which stretches along U.S. 40 from Baltimore to St. Louis, began in 2004 to promote tourism on the Old National Road and has since grown to include 824 miles of roadside sales.
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Choir members cleaned out their closets to prepare for the event, which ran Thursday to Saturday. They set up shop in the parking lot of the Bradley First United Methodist Church, hoping to raise money to support the 60-member group.
Sheet music is among the organization’s most expensive needs, choir member Dee Padgett said.
While the sale was intended to entice area residents to hand over their dollars, Padgett admitted some of the funds raised over the weekend came from choir members’ pockets.
“I’m walking around buying someone else’s junk — I mean ‘stuff,’” she joked.
Greenfield resident Keith Terry said he comes from a long line of bargain-shoppers and was in his element Saturday as he made his way from booth to booth.
His grandmother used to take her children to flea markets when they were young, always keeping an eye out for the best deals. His mother picked up the habit, making yard sales a regular family outing.
Last weekend, the 8-year-old apprentice took to haggling. He’s already something of a pro.
“I didn’t teach him,” his mother, Melissa Terry, said with a laugh. “He just did it on his own.”
The Terrys also conducted a yard sale of their own during the weekend event.
For the Terrys, having a sale was a chance not only to clear out clutter but to save up for a family vacation.
Of course, Melissa Terry admitted she couldn’t resist checking out what others were offering along the route — and her kids came along for the ride.
Saturday afternoon, Keith was proud of some of his finds, which included an old wooden jewelry box and a variety of vegetables to plant in the garden.
“I got one tomato for $1.50, and the red peppers are for me and my mom,” Keith said.
The sale sees a variety of goods sold each year, from mundane closet clutter to inspired works of original art.
Sarah Taylor, 19, had a booth set up on the courthouse lawn Saturday to sell her grandmother’s “little hobby” at $25 apiece. Sitting on stands in the yard were what the family has taken to calling Grandma’s garden balls.
The decorations are made from bowling balls on stands, each ball adorned with all manner of trinkets — watches, broaches, gemstones and more.
Taylor said her grandmother won’t tell anyone what she uses to adhere the items, but customers can rest assured the delicate attachments aren’t going anywhere — the balls have been tested in the blistering sun and in their maker’s deep freezer to make sure they’ll survive year-round Indiana weather.
“She won’t tell anybody what kind of glue it is,” Taylor said.