By Mark Stalcup
Name your price -- it will suffice, but if you'd throw in a donation, that'd be nice.
A fall housecleaning at Linton's Cheapo Depot will go outdoors to offer a different sort of yard sale from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 23-24.
The Cheapo Depot is located at 60 S.E. A St. just north of the Linton Post Office in a brick building which formerly housed a laundromat. It offers a variety of low-priced items, with profits funding the church's food bank and other community ministry outreach efforts.
The shop also assists those whose homes have burned, or those down on their luck who can receive three sets of clothing for each family member.
The facility, owned and operated by the Bibleway Church, will close Monday through Thursday to ready for the first-ever event.
Presently, the Depot's hours typically run 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays.
The yard sale's a chance for those in need can pick up clothes, books and other household gear, paying what they like -- or nothing at all.
"Everything's free, but people can give whatever donations they want to give," said volunteer Carla "Sue" Laser. "I know a lot of people really don't have a lot to give."
Donations are preferred, of course, said organizers. They'll help defray an estimated $1,000 in costs associated with sending 10 women to the United Pentacostal Churches of Indiana District Conference in Indianapolis on Oct. 29-30.
Louise Sullivan, a volunteer worker at Cheapo Depot, said the donation-only yard sale's a great chance to help those in need while raising money for the effort.
She estimated about $100 is needed for each of the 10 attendees to cover registration, hotel room, and gas money.
The sale's also a chance for the Cheapo Depot to clear out two back rooms packed with clothing, books, household items and other donated materials.
"We've got two back rooms full, a lot of stuff," Laser said. "Not only summer clothes, but winter as well. We're sorting through it this week. We've got some books, too, and we'll be sorthing through those and putting them out there."
Because the store receives an array of donations and purchases furniture at auction, the inventory's constantly changing. Some things even prove difficult for staffers to identify.
Still, there's generally something for everyone in the mix, sooner or later, from camoflage gear to NASCAR memorabilia, Barbie dolls to tea sets along with lots of clothes and furniture.
"People seem to like how we keep the prices low," Sullivan said.
Some donations are also delivered to West Terre Haute's Promise Land Apostolic Church, 2400 Silvan Rd., which partners with Bibleway.
"Some of the Terre Haute churches even came to get a load, but w'e're full up. We get donations down here every day. I thought when it was winter, it would slow down, but a lot of people gave every day, even in the winter."
However, while Sullivan said the charity's been blessed by generous giving locally, one frustration remains: Often, the things left after hours wind up ruined by rain or ransacked, forcing the store's few workers to collect the goods.
"One day, someone said they saw kids walking past the donations, just tearing clothes out and throwing them all over, just to me mean," Laser said. "So it's still a problem sometimes, just not as bad lately."