First United Methodist to host annual fall rummage sale after COVID hiatus

Published 9:17 am Thursday, September 30, 2021

DOWAGIAC — The onset of fall is a busy time for Darlene Trussell.

Trussell, a member of First United Methodist Church, 326 N. Lowe St., has been hard at work preparing for the church’s annual fall rummage and bake sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 8-9.

The sale — which has been a church staple for roughly 20 years — will feature clothing, home goods, media, books, furniture, tools, medical supplies and more.

“We have tools this year,” Trussell said. “We also have woodworking tools and some other tools. We have a lot of vintage stuff this year.”

That Saturday, unmarked clothing will sell for $4 per bag while marked clothing and other items will be sold at half price.

“With the bag sale, you will get a paper bag and you fill that bag as much as you can — even if it overflows — for $4. Everything else will be half price, including furniture.”

Proceeds from the sale will go toward church renovation projects. The rummage sale will be the second sale hosted by the church this year. First United hosted a spring rummage sale in May that raised more than $3,500 for local charities and organizations.

“We have the driveway, we have the kitchen where a lot of updates need to be done there,” Trussell said. “A few years ago, we used a portion of the proceeds from the sale for the roof.”

The rummage sale is a church community effort. According to Trussell, roughly 15 volunteers are helping bring the sale to life.

“I really haven’t had a problem with people saying no to me,” Trussell said. “I have a lot of people that help. With our bake sale, it’s all homemade bake sale stuff. I have to say that the Methodists know how to bake and cook.”

Trussell hopes to see a strong turnout as well as COVID safety. Masks and hand sanitizer will be available at the church entrance.

“We’ll also have somebody at the door greeting them,” Trussell said.  “We really had a lot of people that came this last time that appreciated that we were doing that and we will be wearing masks ourselves.”

For Trussell and her volunteers, giving back to the community is what matters most.

“A lot of times we will help fire victims,” she said. “They’ll contact me, and I will give that stuff away to the Red Cross, and they will come and give it away. Organizations in St. Joseph and Benton Harbor that wanted leftover stuff came and took things, and it was wonderful to me because it made more room. It’s all worthwhile, you know? If somebody needs something very badly, and they’ve had a fire or anything like that, then we just go ahead and give it to them. Because it’s part of what the Lord is teaching us.”