Naramata is preparing for traffic jams and bargain hunters when the tranquil village once again hosts its Community Yard Sale.
The event, sponsored by Naramata Parks and Recreation Commission, has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years.
Volunteer co-ordinator Craig Henderson even called out the police to last year’s event.
“On 51 Saturdays a year, our village is a sleepy little place, we don’t even have a traffic light. During our 2012 sale, we were fortunate to have two auxiliary RCMP members attend to direct traffic on the busiest corner in town.”
Henderson estimates that up to 2,000 people could show up from outside Naramata on Saturday, April 20.
“I am expecting we will have 30 residential yard sales, plus seven community groups are involved too.”
A special map is published and handed out so visitors can find their way around Naramata.
“It is a very festive atmosphere, especially in the heart of the village. The community church hosts its Bizarre Bazaar, the Friends of the Library stages a used book sale, and the parents at the elementary school fill the gym with used clothes, and shoppers can fill a shopping bag for $5.”
Even members of Canada’s Upper Chamber have been in on the fun.
“Senator Larry Campbell turned out to shop in 2010 when the sale coincided with the federal election. While he was here in the village to campaign for the federal Liberals, the senator told me the Naramata stopover was well worth it. He found a repair manual for a 1955 Chevy pick-up at the book sale.”
Campbell is a former mayor of Vancouver, former city coroner, former B.C. chief coroner and former RCMP member. His life inspired the television series Da Vinci’s Inquest on CBC. On yard sale day though, Henderson found Campbell to be just a regular happy shopper.
“The senator told me that he has a vintage Chevy truck at home and maybe now he can fix it so the doors don’t fly open while driving. He said, ‘I desperately needed this repair book.’”
As for 2013, Henderson says his biggest hope is for nice weather. Festivities begin at 9 a.m. all over Naramata on April 20. Maps will be handed out at many community locations.