Unpacking for the annual Coupeville Lions Club Garage Sale is a bit like a treasure hunt.
As Lions and volunteers open the three barns worth of boxes and other collected items, they never know what they might find.
“It’s amazing the volunteers we get sometimes,” said Lion Dave Fish, incoming president. Last week as the club began the two-week process of setting up for the sale, which takes place this weekend at Coupeville Elementary School, treasures began popping up.
Fish said a non-Lion volunteer spotted a poster that turned out to be pretty valuable.
The 1968 Jefferson Airplane event poster from Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco is available online for several hundred dollars.
“I wouldn’t have spotted it,” Fish said.
And because it’s the Lions garage sale, the poster can be yours for the bargain price of $100.
As items are unearthed and set up, Lions work at organizing sales carts and marking prices. It can be a long and arduous process.
Lions Jackie Feusier is on stand-by, laptop in hand, to research the value on any questionable treasure. Mixed among the regular household items, tools and standard garage sale items can be found items like an old telephone, compass or antique.
Researching items is something she said she enjoys.
The annual garage sale is the club’s largest fundraiser and project of the year. Items are collected year-round and stored in donated barn space in Ebey’s Prairie and all proceeds from the event go back into the community through the club’s charitable projects.
The sale is really community driven.
Items large and small are donated and the club relies and appreciates the help of community volunteers to transport items to the school.
What once took four days to transport took only two-and-a-half days this year.
“We had an amazing move,” Fish said.
Much of that had to do with the amount of community volunteers the club had this year, Fish said. Sailors from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island came to help haul as well as sports teams from Coupeville School District.
After each sale, the project committee evaluates how it went and adjusts and makes changes for improvement.
This year’s sale will boast several new features including an “outlet tent” for those shoppers really interested in a bargain.
The sale will also feature new infrastructure. Additional metal racks were purchased, making aisles more assessable. The shelves have wheels, making them easily portable and, Fish says, more efficient.
“People love them, they make the aisles better and you can roll them around,” he said.
The Lions Garage sale starts at 9 a.m. sharp on Saturday and runs until 4 p.m. It will conclude Sunday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
As always, the bargain hunting enthusiast can come Friday afternoon to preview the sale.
Items not sold over the weekend will be donated to Garage of Blessings.