‘World’s Largest Garage Sale’ is huge draw for Warrensburg

The “World’s Largest Garage Sale,” a tradition in the Warren County community of Warrensburg since 1
Shoppers look over items at a previous "World’s Largest Garage Sale" in Warrensburg.
Shoppers look over items at a previous "World’s Largest Garage Sale" in Warrensburg.

Autumn means orange in maple trees, pumpkin patches and fireplaces.

In the Adirondack town of Warrensburg, the season also means vintage tools, rare glassware and metal toys. The “World’s Largest Garage Sale,” a tradition in the Warren County community since 1979, will be held Saturday and Sunday.

Treasure hunters and sellers will fill the town’s bed-and-breakfasts, crowd the restaurants and jam the Main Street sidewalks during the weekend. More than 1,000 vendors are expected to set up tents in Warrensburg, situated about an hour north of the Capital Region.

“It’s a townwide event,” said Lynn Smith, president of the town’s Chamber of Commerce and co-chairwoman of the sale. “You can buy old stuff, you can buy new stuff. It’s like a big flea market up and down the street.”

World’s Largest Garage Sale

WHERE: Main Street, Warrensburg, and its side streets

WHEN: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

HOW MUCH: Free

MORE INFO: 623-2161 or www.warrensburg chamber.com

Smith said odds and ends on sale include used fishing poles, furniture, Adirondack chairs and old magazines. People who wander Warrensburg side streets will find yards and driveways stocked with potential bargains.

Influx for the inns

In addition to promoting the sale, Smith also is preparing her business for weekend guests. She and her husband, Al, own Allynn’s Butterfly Inn on Route 28. Like other B&Bs and nearby motels, Smith will have a full house this weekend.

“They fill up a year in advance,” Smith said. People who run the inns stick together this time of year. Smith said if she or other owners receive cancellations, the word goes out. When other, fully booked places receive calls from potential customers, the innkeeper recommends the B&B with the vacancy.

People spend more time on the streets than in their rooms. Looking around town, Smith said, is part of the fun. Shoppers never know what they’ll find.

“One year, I was looking for Avon cordial glasses, red garnet glasses,” Smith said. “I was looking for four or five of them, and I told all my guests at the bed and breakfast to look out for them. Now I have 36 of them.”

Parking can be as tricky as looking for a “Nixon’s the One” campaign button. Smith suggested drivers take Northway Exit 23 and just look for the signs for parking and shuttle buses. Another option is taking Northway Exit 25 and driving south through Chestertown to a parking spot near Warrensburg. Shoppers can also roll through Lake George and take Route 9N to Warrensburg — but those people should expect traffic congestion.

Wide variety

Smith said people should expect to find just about everything at the sale.

“I have one gentleman who comes up, he always finds old tools,” she said. “I have another, a lady who always buys salt and pepper shakers.”

Helpful hints

Folks who put together the garage sale offer these tips:

— Arrive Friday, if possible. Early birds always show up at garage sales, and the Warrensburg bash is no different. While the sale officially opens Saturday at 9 a.m., many dealers will open Friday at 5 p.m. to give “birds” something to shop for.

— Wear comfortable walking shoes, as just about everyone at the sale will do plenty of stepping and striding.

— Bring cash.

— Dress in layers, and bring a backpack in which to put small wares purchased at the sale.

— Wear a waist belt for hands-free shopping.

Categories: Life and Arts

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