The Athens Rotary Foundation is having an unconventional fundraiser in a seemingly unconventional space.
The fundraiser is in the form of a yard sale, but it’s a little different than the average three or four tables holding various items stickered with prices set up in someone’s garage in a suburb or city neighborhood, where more people frequent.
This yard sale is not in a suburban garage but in an indoor horse arena out in the country, and most of the items for sale aren’t marked with prices.
It’s something different, but something that the Athens Rotary Foundation chairperson, Sarah Baker, thinks people will like.
Baker is holding the yard sale on her property, EMBE Acres, on Angel Ridge Road off of Old Route 33. EMBE Acres serves as a location for horse boarding, special events such as therapeutic horse riding and an AirBnB. Baker, a certified massage therapist, also has her office at EMBE Acres.
The yard sale will include dining room table sets, coffee tables, chairs, couches, light fixtures, dishes, toys, clothes, bedding, paintings, home décor, gardening supplies, electronics and various other items for sale.
The items being sold aren’t just donations from rotary members but from the Athens community as a whole. Baker and other rotary members reached out to multiple business owners and employees in Athens during the last few months trying to collect as many donations as possible.
Court Street businesses such as Blue Eagle Music and Attractions Hair and Nail Salon have donated items for the sale. The Alexander Local Schools boys soccer also donated items that they didn’t sell at their own yard sale fundraiser from earlier this year.
Yard sale items aren’t the only donations the rotary has received either. Bedrock Rentals is donating tables for the event, Pepsi and Walmart are donating refreshments, Ambassador Laundry donated hangers and ReUse Industries donated clothing racks to hang clothes for sale at the event.
ReStore let the rotary keep donations from Athens Station Depot location during Ohio University’s move-out week.
The SEPTA Correctional Facility is also lending a helping hand. Four residents from SEPTA will help Baker move items from their storage locations on her property to the floor of the arena during the weekend to get an early start on setting up for the yard sale, which will take place on June 3 and 4.
“We couldn’t do this without them,” Baker said of the agencies and businesses who are donating items and assistance for the yard sale.
As the chairperson for the Athens Rotary Foundation, Baker is responsible for making sure the foundations meets its annual goal to donate to the international Rotary Foundation. The Rotary Foundation supports many do-good causes around the world, such as promoting peace by training people to help refugees, supporting local solutions to providing clean water to communities, and working to eradicate polio, which money from the fundraiser will be used to support.
The Athens Rotary Foundation aims to meet their goal of raising $7,500 by the end of June to donate to the international Rotary Foundation. Typically the way they fundraise is through donations from Athens rotary club members, Baker said, but the yard sale was a “great way to supplement our club member giving,” making it a community-inclusive fundraiser.
“I’m confident (the yard sale) will help us to meet or beat our goal,” she said.