Giving Back To The Community
Three Worthy Not-For Profits Receive Benefits
Years before my life began as an innkeeper, I was a busy wife and mom who had a garage sale every year to clean out old toys, clothes and household items that we were no longer using. It was a lot of work but a lot of fun to get ready for and have this sale every year. As best as I can pinpoint it, the last one I had was probably in 2002 since we moved to Arizona in 2003 and I never had one after that. Eleven years have passed and in that time we added to our memories as well as to our growing collection of "stuff". We spent three years in Arizona and then moved to Kentucky and finally in 2007 we moved back home to New York state and bought 10 Fitch.
"We decided to donate all proceeds to charity and I was very excited to see what God would do as giving back became our focus for having the sale."
Our basement at the inn was filled with box after box after box of items that the movers had packed up in Kentucky and the garage had a huge pile of boxes that I had marked for a garage sale but there was the issue of where and when to have it. You certainly can't have a garage sale taking place when you have guests coming to stay at your quiet, romantic inn! So the boxes stayed piled up and more were added to the piles over the years.
A lot of furniture and things came with the inn when we bought it so many of our own possessions, including a lot of furniture, were in storage for a few years and then that stuff was moved here and some of it used to furnish my moms apartment and the second apartment in a duplex that we bought a few years later. Both of our sons have lived in the duplex and used some of the furnishings that we had stored away. Our eldest son began at University of Rochester this semester so he and our daughter in law moved out of the duplex and moved to Rochester in mid-August. At that point we began making plans for Susan, our new assistant, to move into the apartment as part of her compensation. It was then that the thought to have a tag sale hit me! Why not? Susan wouldn't be moving in until October 1st and the place would be vacant for more than a month. We could have the sale indoors right next door so we wouldn't have to worry about weather and we could take our time setting everything up. We decided to donate all proceeds to charity and I was very excited to see what God would do as giving back became our focus for having the sale. We chose the Pregnancy Care Center of Cayuga County, David's Refuge & Grace Chapel Skaneateles because we have been involved with each organization personally and we believe in their missions and what they are doing to positively impact the lives of others in the surrounding communities.
And so the first week in September we began hauling stuff over to the duplex. Up from the basement it came. Down from the 3rd floor of the inn, where Rodney & I have our quarters, it traveled, and from out of the garage it arrived at the duplex where mom spent an entire week unpacking, sorting and cleaning everything! Here is a picture I took early in the week, this is a TINY bit of what we had in the sale.
I spent the last two nights before the sale marking everything and making and posting signs. In the midst of it all we took care of our guests and ran things at 10 Fitch as usual. Items for the sale filled each room of the duplex including 3 bedrooms and a bath upstairs as well as living room, dining room, kitchen and porch downstairs! We advertised in the local paper and on Craig's List.
Our sale was held on Friday September 19 and Saturday September 20th from 8AM-4PM. Our goal was to raise at least $1000 since we were dividing the proceeds between 3 charities. We had signs up that said, "All Proceeds from this sale are going to charity - Pregnancy Care Center of Cayuga County, David's Refuge & Grace Chapel Skaneateles. Thank you for your support!" We had information about David's Refuge posted next to the signs. Many people commented on what we were doing and we had opportunity to share with them some additional information.
Of course it was a tag sale and people came looking for bargains and we did a lot of dickering. For the most part, I think we gave them what they wanted. We had a lot of great stuff and we really tried to price everything reasonably. The best part of the whole experience for me, besides the money that we raised for the charities, was how many people gave a little more than what was marked on the items they were buying because they understood what we were doing, that it wasn't just a tag sale, it was so much more than that, and they could be a part of it, giving back to the community to and having a positive effect on peoples lives. By the end of the day on Saturday we had reached our goal and raised $1000!
If you are interested in finding out more about the charities that we had our tag sale for just click on the links above to go to their website.