A Rite of Autumn: An Arena Sale

It happens every year.

Minnehaha Academy holds a huge arena sale in their…well, arena. Only a few short blocks from my home, this sale draws a large community of people each September.   On the first day of the sale, neighbors line up at least one hour before doors open and pay an entrance fee of $3 to take advantage of those great buys!  And there are plenty.  Here are some examples:

People lined up on an early Friday morning to pay $3 and take advantage of our neighborhood’s Rite of Autumn.
Photo: JStanton

The Furniture department, selling things like end tables, dressers, sofas, love seats, lamps, and porch furniture, seems to be popular right from the start.

The Household department offers items like bread machines, coffee pots, irons, mugs, water bottles, dishes, glasses, pictures and picture frames.

The Clothing departments for women, men, and children, display tops, active wear, suits, blazers, nightwear, t-shirts, pants, capris, coats and loads of ties for men.  There’s even a special section of women’s clothing called The Round Room that holds an inventory of the most exquisite labels in women’s clothing.  A nearby department hosts a big variety of children’s games and toys.

Then there is the Jewelry table with the likes of earrings, bracelets, necklaces, sunglasses, headbands.

The Accessories department sports baseball caps, belts, purses, and scarves.

The Tool department sells everything a handyman or handywoman needs:  hammers, screwdrivers, wrenches and…who knows what else?  (I haven’t spent much time in this one.)

The Sporting Goods department is fun for all ages.  A variety of soft balls, baseballs, soccer balls, basketballs, weights, skis, and exercise mats attract an array of customers.

The Antiques department sells old dishes, glasses, knick-knacks, and furniture.

The Electronics department displays computers, stereos, boom boxes, alarm clocks and, interestingly enough, pencils, pens, stationary, calendars, journals, and three-ring notebooks.

The Book department is always popular, hosting cookbooks, fiction, non-fiction, CDs, videos.  Always popular!

The Linen department has shelves stocked with tablecloths, cloth napkins, dish towels, bath towels, rugs, sheets, quilts, pillows, bedspreads, and bath accessories like toothbrush holders and mirrors.

Last but not least, the Trim department displays artificial flowers, pots, and lots and lots and lots of Christmas décor.

I went over there Friday morning and when I found two large items that I could not carry to the check-out table, I called Rick for help.  We had lots of fun finishing up our shopping, purchasing a photo frame, coffee pot, beautiful new wine glasses, and bath and dish towels.

Rick with our new rake–only 50 cents!
Photo: JStanton

In addition to this huge sale, neighbors take advantage of this sale by having sales of their own.  Almost every nearby street has at least one sale.  We benefitted from one of them, where we bought a great rake (it is autumn) and three new decorative pillows for our sunroom (it really did need more color.)

This arena sale, it seems it me, is about more than great bargains.  It is a time when the community comes together, supports a good cause, and enjoys one another’s company on a beautiful fall day.  It truly is the Rite of Autumn in our neighborhood.

And it happens every year!

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