PREBLE COUNTY — The annual U.S. 127 Yard Sale is the “world’s longest yard sale.” This year the event was held Thursday, Aug. 3-Sunday, Aug. 6. U.S. 127 runs straight through Preble County, so people from all over the state and even the country came to shop Preble County this past weekend.
U.S. 127 is a 758-mile long north-south U.S. highway in the eastern half of the United States. Since 1987, it has been the core of the annual World’s Longest Yard Sale, which now stretches 690 miles, from Addison, Michigan, to Gadsden, Alabama. The sale was started to demonstrate that the older U.S. highway system had something to offer that the interstate highway system did not.
The sale always officially starts on the first Thursday in August, and runs through the following Sunday. Every year individuals clean out their closets and garages and camp out in their front lawns along the U.S. 127.
Bobbie and David Pike found themselves in Eaton during the 127 Yard Sale. The couple is from Arcanum, so they weren’t very far from home at all. Saturday was their first day participating in the weekend sales. David Pike said, “We’re looking for odds and ins. This is our third year going to the yard sales. We like seeing what’s out there.”
Alex Keeler was actually selling in Eaton during the garage sales, but she is from Oxford. “I do my own hand painting on anything old that I can possible find,” she said. “Old windows, I have old wood from old barns — anything that I can find to paint on. We’ve been set up since Wednesday and business has been excellent. This is my second year selling during the garage sales.
“I’ve seen groups of women out here — it’s a great girls’ day out. It’s a fun day. People love to see old stuff and reminisce. So I think there’s a combination of reasons people come out.”
Saturday was also Joe and Marsha Sparks’ first day garage sailing. “I’m getting ready to redo the kitchen and I want to look for little things for outside,” Marsha Sparks said. “This is only our second year doing the 127 garage sales. We went south last year so this year we’re going north. We had a lot of fun last year being out on the road, running into people, and seeing what people had to sell. We’re from West Carrollton and we plan to go up into Michigan, possibly. As far as we get until we get tired. Last year we got to Lexington.”
Linda Sabo, from Middletown, was participating in the 127 Yard Sales for her first year. “I saw a couple of places post their shops so I wanted to go out and check them out,” she said. “I’m looking for antiques mainly. I’m not planning on going far. We’re going to hold on to our money and just look out for things that are in this area and then head home.”
Lisa and Kevin Hoffman were on a long trip from Illinois to Preble County. They set out on their journey on Thursday. “I like to look at old tools,” Kevin Hoffman said.
“I like to look at the old furniture that you can refurbish,” Lisa Hoffman added.
They added, they weren’t looking for anything particular, but were always looking for a bargain.
“This is our first year participating in the 127 garage sales,” Kevin Hoffman said. “We’ve talked about it a lot. There are several of these that go down different highways. We just happened to see this one and it coincided with vacation time. We’re having fun so far and will come back next year — but we’ll bring friends.”
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH