On Centre: Bald Eagle Area | Port Matilda ready to wheel and deal at community yard sale

June 10, 2014 

Linda Rudy and Bonnie Hay, sisters with a penchant for bargains, liked what they saw.

Browsing local community yard sales, such as in Centre Hall, they realized what they were missing back home.

“We said, ‘Why, we should do this in Port Matilda,’ ” Rudy said.

More than a decade ago, the sisters started what has become a borough tradition. Hay died two years ago this summer, but Rudy is carrying on their brainchild.

From 9 a.m. Saturday until whenever, Port Matilda once again will turn into yard sale central for a day. Scattered throughout town will be clothing, furniture, household items, toys, books and anything else that can be laid out in driveways and garages.

Or so Rudy hears.

“I never get to go look,” she said. “I’m trying to sell things that day.”

Shoppers might even come across benefit bake sales and other opportunities for snacks.

“It’s something that people seem to really enjoy, and it brings a lot of people into town, which is good for our businesses,” Rudy said.

Speaking of which, she said she’s grateful for the support that borough stores and restaurants give the event. Before the first sale, she went around town, collecting $1 here and there from businesses to pay for a newspaper advertisement for the day.

That proved time-consuming and tiring, and the next year, the business community came to the rescue. Each year, Rudy said, a local business has bought the ad, sparing her the effort of going door-to-door or the cost of paying for the publicity out of her own pocket.

This year, Rudy said, her son-in-law, who owns Little Sprouts Greenhouse near Port Matilda, ponied up the money.

Moreover, she said, Borough Council has gotten behind the event every year by putting up signs at each end of town.

“It’s very, very important that we have all this support from the community,” Rudy said.

Anybody in town is welcome to join the sale simply by setting out items. Out-of-town sellers can rent a table in the Port Matilda Fire Company. Call the company at 692-4074 to make arrangements.

Rudy goes into this year’s sale with something of a heavy heart.

“My sister was always such a big help, and I miss her so,” she said.

But she’s also excited to have other assistants.

Her grandchildren are getting toys and other items ready, and one granddaughter has a special plan. She’s going to peddle lemonade and brownies from a stand — itself a testament to the appeal of a good find.

“That we bought at another yard sale,” Rudy said.

Chris Rosenblum writes a weekly column about news in the Upper and Lower Bald Eagle valleys. If you have news to share, email crosenblum@centredaily.com or call 231-4620.

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