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Mile-Long community yard sale stretched

July 03, 2003|by KATE COLEMAN

katec@herald-mail.com

Bettie Burns has lived in Hagerstown for nine years. She recently had a call from her daughter who lives in Montgomery County, Md., and will be visiting Hagerstown for the Fourth of July. She'll be coming with a friend and her son, and she called to see when the Mile-Long Yard Sale is happening this year.

This yard sale is an event with pull.

Harriette Bowers has helped organize the event for several years. She picked up the reins from her neighbor, the late Marie Dahlhamer.

The sale, which began on Paradise Church Road more than two decades ago, has spread to adjacent neighborhoods - Orchard Hills, Longmeadow Road and Fountain Head North, Bowers says.

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"More like five-mile," says Dick Strobl, who lives on Paradise Drive and helps with publicity, calling the television station, posting four large signs and hanging a banner on Paradise Church Road.

He's been involved in the sale since its beginning, finding enough things to sell to bring a couple of hundred dollars.

He does well selling hot dogs, too - about $400 worth. He says he's happy that the county health department reduced the $50 food-vending permit fee required last year. "It put some of them out of business," Bowers says.

A permit costs $15 this year.

Bowers always manages to sell some "odds and ends" at her part of the sale. She puts price tags on everything, but says her prices are negotiable.

The annual bazaar has become a social event.

"For sure," Strobl says. "There's a ton of people, and everybody has a good time."

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