Hall transforms into mall for annual sale
St. Gall Catholic Church’s Pastoral Hall goes through a metamorphosis each year into the St. Gall Mall run by Rummage Sale Queen Bev Simmons, as part of the church’s biggest fundraiser.
The sale, which has been in existence since 1984, opens it doors once again Friday and Saturday.
“It is bigger than ever,” Simmons said. “This takes a ton of coordination, but we all work as a committee to get it done. Each department is like its own little island and I have learned to let them go and they always maximize what they are doing.”
The annual sale fills the gym and hallways of the pastoral center as well as the parking lot beside the church.
What has become a community staple, the sale rousts people from the beds to line up for Simmons’ opening horn as early as 6 a.m. Friday morning.
“The community loves this because of our quality and our pricing,” Simmons’ assistant Rocky Barth said. “Nobody in the whole state does what we do. We have churches from California that come each year asking for our advice on how they can grow their sales to what we have.”
For the entire month of July more than 150 volunteers staff their departments, washing, organizing and insuring each and every donated item is ready to be sold.
Since the second year of the rummage sale, Claudi Broquist has been polishing silver and shining crystal in the boutique department.
“I just love polishing all of this silver,” Broquist, said rubbing the bottom of a silver platter, “I also enjoy the ‘ah’ moments when something nice comes in. There have been a lot. When these table are filled for the sale they will be absolutely beautiful.”
Boutique department head Diane Ogden was drawn to her department by the sparkle and shine.
While shining a small wine glass, Ogden said she enjoys helping people.
“I started in housewares. Its so much fun and I love it. I look forward to it every year,” Ogden said. “I love when people come and ask for a specific thing and being able to go to the exact box that it is in. I love that. I like sparkling, shining things and I like making things shiny.”
Working with six other full-time volunteers, Ogden and Broquist said the sale is a team effort, every department flowing into another.
“We all work together in each department,” Ogden said. “That is part of what make it happen.”
Everything from electronics to clothes to a 1994 Subaru, is available at the sale.
With every inch of spare space available housing items for sale, it will look as if the sale never happened, each of those items disappearing to various charities at the end.
“That is part of the ministry of this whole thing,” Simmons said. “We will provide more than $30,000 in charity vouchers by the end of this. Also, people like the Elks come and get things for their sale in September, and we give all of our animal things to DAWG as well as the blankets we know we won’t sell. We donate to Cystic Fibrosis and Multiple Sclorsis Society. All of the small toiletry items go to Blue Star Moms for the troops, we pull all the glasses aside for the Lions Club. We do what we can to help other ministries.”
The preschool will be set up outside of the church selling coffee, donuts and hot dogs to hungry shoppers as a way of supporting their organization, as well.
The sale is 7 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday.
Parking is available in both the Carson Valley United Methodist Church and the First Baptist Church in addition to the St. Gall parking lot.
The church is located at 1343 Centerville Lane, Gardnerville. For more information call 782-2852.
Motorists should expect increased traffic on Centerville during the sale.