Selma, N.C. — Johnston County will become a merchandise mecca this June with a 30-mile yard sale stretching from Kenly to Benson.
The 301 Endless Yard Sale runs June 14 to 15, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and hopes to attract thousands of shoppers in Benson, Kenly, Selma and Smithfield.
“(We’ll have) small furniture pieces, collectibles, things you want to get rid of in your garage – A to Z,” said Donna Bailey-Taylor, Johnson County’s tourism director.
Many sellers will be set up in well-established visitor sites, such as the Tobacco Farm Life Museum in Kenly, TWM Antiques in Selma and the Smithfield Community Farmers Market, as well as families, churches and schools on the route with vendors, according to yard sale officials.
Tom Abdalla and his brother, who work as antique dealers in Selma, came up with the idea after buying bargains at a 700-mile annual yard sale that stretches along a U.S. highway from Michigan to Alabama.
“I started thinking about it. We have (U.S.) Highway 301, and 301 would be an ideal place for this endless yard sale in Johnston County,” Abdalla said.
The brothers brought their idea to Selma Mayor Cheryl Oliver, who loved the idea. “Let them see all that these small towns have to offer,” she said.
For those concerned about the potential traffic problems the yard sale could cause on U.S. 301, Abdalla offers this advice.
“You have Interstate 95. If locals want to bypass it, they can, but who would want to bypass this?” he said. “I see this as being an endless possibility.”
The 301 Endless Yard Sale website has answers to several frequently asked questions, such as:
Q: How do I become a vendor?
A: Anyone can be a vendor by simply having a yard sale in their yard, at their business or setting up in designated vendor places. The communities along U.S. 301 have worked with area contacts to established vendors locations and each town will have a list of available locations. Each town will have worked with sites on permits, parking, public restrooms and food vendor guidelines. Vendors should work with town contacts closely to ensure a successful experience for all.
Q: What does it cost to participate?
A: There is no fee for local residents to participate however, some vendor spaces may charge a nominal rental fee to allow you to set up a booth.
Q: Is there an admission fee?
A: No. You should never have to pay admission. The event was not set up for that purpose.