BRENDA RUSH HOYT An­other Man’s Trea­sure

Ex­pe­ri­ence says bar­gains truly ‘ga­lore' on 64

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - FEATURE - LARA JO HIGHTOWER

When Al­tus res­i­dent Linda Hiles and her hus­band shopped the 127 Cor­ri­dor sale — a gar­gan­tuan road­side yard sale that stretches for 690 miles from Michi­gan to Alabama — a ker­nel of an idea took shape.

“I thought, ‘Golly, that would be ter­rific to have some­thing like that in Arkansas,’” she re­mem­bers. So the an­tique shop owner set about to make it hap­pen. In Au­gust 2000, the first “Bar­gains Ga­lore on 64” sale kicked off.

“We have so many ho­tels and restau­rants and other tourist ser­vices avail­able along this route, and the ac­cess to I-40 makes it con­ve­nient for a lot of peo­ple,” she says of the choice to set the sale along U.S. 64 from Fort Smith stretch­ing to Beebe. “I got to­gether with ad­ver­tis­ing and pro­mo­tional ser­vices and Cham­ber of Com­merce or­ga­ni­za­tions from all those towns, and they agreed to help fund mar­ket­ing ser­vices.”

It’s no won­der cities are ea­ger to par­tic­i­pate: Hiles says an im­pact study com­pleted by Robert Wof­ford of the Col­lege of the Ozarks in 2004 es­ti­mated that ap­prox­i­mately $190,000 was brought into tiny Ozark, a town along the route, as a re­sult of the sale.

“Af­ter the first year, it started grow­ing like crazy,” says Hiles. “There are no re­quire­ments to get a per­mit dur­ing this event — all you have to do is set up, as long as you have per­mis­sion of the prop­erty owner. It’s such a great money raiser for any non­profit or civic or­ga­ni­za­tion.”

This year’s sale will start on Thurs­day and run un­til Aug. 12. Want to know how to make the most of the 160-mile trea­sure hunt? Con­sider these tips and tricks from area junk­ing pro­fes­sion­als.

SHARA STACKS

Mon­keyBox at Fayet­teville’s Funky Yard Sale Years shopped? Three

Fa­vorite pur­chase? A box with three very old com­po­si­tion dolls. It was at a

sale that I al­ways stop at but rarely make a pur­chase. The dolls weren’t priced, and I al­most didn’t ask, but at the last minute I went back. When they said $10, I couldn’t pay quickly enough. I sold one for $80, one for $50, and I still have the most valu­able one — she’s a Rose O’Neill Kew­pie doll. I didn’t know their value when I first found them, but I knew they were valu­able!

Fa­vorite stretch? I gen­er­ally go into Alma to the city limit, turn around, and head to Ozark, then back to Alma. I only go to the sales on the side of the road that I am driv­ing. Most of the church sales are low on mer­chan­dise by the time I get to them. I think peo­ple pur­pose­fully go to them first. I just go in or­der and stop at any that look promis­ing. Back­yard sales are of­ten the best. They’re big­ger, and the mer­chan­dise is be­hind the house so they can close up at night.

Tips or tricks? Watch out for traf­fic and pedes­tri­ans. Watch out when YOU are a pedes­trian. It’s hot. Take a cooler full of ice and wa­ter and snacks. If you see a bath­room, use it. They are few and far be­tween. Flea and Easy at Daisies and Olive in Prairie Grove Years shopped? Six

Fa­vorite stretch? The Alma area is full of great sales, and I spend a lot of time in that area be­cause there’s a great stretch of high­way with a lot of sales to stop at. The Ozark area is also a fa­vorite be­cause there are flea mar­kets in that lit­tle town that are great. There is an open air mar­ket close to Mul­berry, close to the river, that a lot of folk come out for. Mor­ril­ton and Menifee are also fa­vorite places. These are the “larger scale,” if you will, ar­eas to shop. But along the way, peo­ple have yard sales set up ev­ery­where you look. In Menifee, there is a great flea mar­ket right on 64 called 2 Broth­ers who spe­cial­ize in re­claimed and re­pur­posed goods, and they rent space to ven­dors dur­ing the sale. We al­ways stop in Mor­ril­ton and work the rail­road tracks.

Tips or tricks? One of my fa­vorite things to do that has noth­ing to do with

pickin’ is stop in Atkins, the home of Fat­man’s Orig­i­nal Fried Pickle. You are on a busy sttate high­way so it is im­per­a­tive to al­ways, al­ways, al­ways be aware of the traf­fic. Don’t open your door un­til you’ve looked at your mir­ror for on­com­ing traf­fic be­hind you. Be cour­te­ous to oth­ers who are pul­li­ing in and out from the shoul­der. Bring wa­ter. Wear com­fort­able shoes and ap­pro­pri­ate cloth­ing. Ne­go­ti­a­tions are a must! You never know how low they will go. Hit the flea mar­kets — they al­ways have sales go­ing. Be ready to have some great con­ver­sa­tions with some great peo­ple along the way — there’s al­ways some­thing to learn.

ANNE HOLCOMB

An­gel’s At­tic

Years Fa­vorite Shopped?at pur­chase?Daisies Two and Every­thingOlives I pur­chase But one of is my my fa­vorite fa­vorite finds— hard was to in de­cide! Ozark, where I pulled in for lunch. There was a lit­tle flea a mar­ket with a me­chanic’s shop in the back where the owner was sell­ing a few things. I looked over by the door, and he had a wood work ta­ble for sale. It was rus­tic and rough, but I saw po­ten­tial in it. My handy dandy man is a won­der­ful car­pen­ter, and he got to work and topped the ta­ble with pine boards, and I sold that ta­ble in my booth to a cou­ple that had a his­toric home in Prairie Grove.

Fa­vorite stretch to shop? I like start­ing at Van Buren but Ozark and east are the best finds.

Tips or tricks? Go early in the morn­ing on the first day. Take a cooler with plenty of wa­ter and a towel to wet your neck.

MAX CON­NOR

He­lena Hand­bas­ket Years Fa­voritetable and shopped?at eight pur­chase?Daisies chairs. Five and An Olives or­nate din­ing

Fa­vorite stretch? Be­tween Ozark and Russellville.

Tips or tricks? Don’t be afraid to get off the beaten path. Some of the best finds are with peo­ple who don’t have the re­sources to put up a tent on the main

FILE PHOTO/KAREN E. SEGRAVE

“This is what pickin’ is all about,” says professional dealer Brenda Hoyt. “Search­ing, ob­serv­ing, get­ting good deals, trav­el­ing miles to find the best stuff … find­ing awe­some items that can be re­pur­posed, up­cy­cled and some­times, need noth­ing at all in or­der to put them in my flea mar­ket space at Daisies and Olives.”

FILE PHOTO/KAREN E. SEGRAVE

“I love Bar­gains Ga­lore on 64 be­cause all of the sales are on the high­way,” says professional dealer Shara Stacks. “No turn­ing off the road or look­ing for ad­dresses. It’s all very or­ga­nized.”

COUR­TESY PHOTO

“It’s a very eclec­tic group of ven­dors — true flea mar­ket stuff to an­tiques, to re­pur­posed, hand­made, sal­vaged barn wood and sal­vaged barn wood made into fur­ni­ture,” says Amity Trade Days owner Kim­berly Jones.

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