Bargain hunters take note: you might want to set your alarm clocks early this weekend. The Super Centretown Garage Sale is returning on Saturday, Sept 6, and downtown residents will be ransacking their closets and basements looking for treasures to unload.
The sale is the brainchild of Wynn Quon, a longtime Centretown resident and board member with the Centretown Community Health Centre (CCHC). After observing the success of the perennially popular Great Glebe Garage Sale, Quon decided the concept could work in Centretown. He picked a date, spread the word, and approximately 80 vendors assembled to unload everything from furniture to knick-knacks. This year, Quon says he’s hoping that number will double.
The success of last year’s sale is the main reason it’s back for a second round, Quon says. “It was not just a way for people to get rid of some of the stuff that they didn’t want around and make some money, but it was just a fine way of meeting neighbours and having people drop by and just sort of bringing a sense of community . . . to Centretown.”
Once again, participating vendors are being asked to donate 10 percent of their proceeds to the CCHC. The centre provides vital health and counselling services to the downtown population, including the popular Gay Zone Gaie program, which makes sexual health services available to the gay community. The CCHC received a funding increase in January to expand both its services and location.
Vendors and bargain hunters are encouraged to use social media to spread the word about the sale using the hashtag #supercentretown and by sharing photos of great deals and unusual finds on Instagram and Twitter. A box of Suzy Q doughnuts will be awarded to the person who sends in the weirdest photo of a purchase.
In future years, Quon says, he hopes to add an entertainment component, such as live music, and potentially get Centretown businesses, including those on Bank Street and in the Village, to participate.
The sale will go on rain or shine, and Quon says it will return again next year. The plan is for it to always fall on the first Saturday after Labour Day. “Centretown has a diverse population, and I think the possibility for quite a distinct personality to emerge is going to come out as we get bigger,” he says. “I think there’s so much potential here that we can get this going [to be] even more popular and even better.”