Thousands of bargain seekers are expected to descend along parts of US 25 today through Sunday, as the historic highway plays host to a nearly 250-mile yard sale. The event spans from the Ohio/Kentucky border through East Tennessee and hits several local sites along the way.
It’s the second annual event, but the first time Campbell County has participated, said E.L. Morton, executive director for the Chamber of Commerce, who’s been coordinating with business leaders and other officials on the interstate commerce event.
Vendors can make some extra money by setting up stands along local parts of US 25W, which runs south through Jellico and snakes through LaFollette, Jacksboro and Caryville.
The sale terminates in Clinton in neighboring Anderson County.
Those without access to the road may join the Campbell County Chamber of Commerce by selling goods at the Famers Market at Jacksboro Middle School on Saturday. There’s no cost, but registration is required.
Corey Barbour, of the local Chamber office, said at least four private individuals had already signed up to sell at the market. That’s in addition to several regular vendors who will also be at the market, he said.
Participation is free along roadsides throughout Campbell County, too, but vendors must gain permission before selling items on private property. Vendors should also beware of high-traffic areas and heed state right of ways.
“It’s a great opportunity in this economy to unload some unwanted stuff and make some extra money,” Morton said. “We’re going to have people coming here this weekend who are choosing to come here.”
Established local retailers and restaurants will additionally benefit from the increased volumes of traffic along US 25W this weekend, Morton said. Other destinations for yard sale travelers — such as state parks and recreational areas — could see a spike in visitors this weekend.
The US 25 Yard Sale aims to mimic the widely successful US 127 Corridor Sale, according to its organizer Judy Wigginton, of Williamstown, Ky.
Billed as “the world’s longest yard sale,” the annual mega-sale spans five states and nearly 690 miles along US 127. It has grown to nearly 4,000 vendors in a short time.
Last year, Wigginton said she began working the phones to make a similar sale happen along US 25, which cuts through her hometown.
Wiggington began calling cities along US 25 in Kentucky, Tennessee and Georgia. She even traveled up and down US 25 distributing flyers.
The inaugural event last year was met with enthusiasm from sellers in Williamstown — about 30 miles south of where the sale’s path actually originates.
“From what I saw, it went well,” Wiggington said. “From the people that I’ve spoken with, people made good money.”
Both Wiggington and Morton hope the US 25 sale continues to grow in scope, as word about the event spreads through the region.
Several vendors who regularly set up stands along US 25W in LaFollette are hoping for an increase in sales this weekend.
On Monday afternoon, Mary Homer and Linda Ayers were selling items in the St. Clare’s Episcopal Church parking lot along US 25W in LaFollette.
The pair regularly sell children’s clothes, toys, swimsuits, gloves and other wares there.
“Most items are from 50 cents to $1,” Homer said. “But everything is negotiable.”
The pair will also be at the site this weekend selling their items.
To join the Chamber of Commerce’s yard sale site at Jacksboro Middle, contact the organization at 566-0329.
Editor’s note: Jamie Baker Nantz, editor of the Grant County News in Dry Ridge, Ky., contributed to the reporting of this story. The Grant County News is a sister newspaper of The LaFollette Press.