Bargain Hunting Comes with Traffic and Lemonade
The world’s longest yard sale returns. The U.S. 127 Yard Sale, which runs from Alabama to Michigan and passes through Mercer County, starts Thursday, Aug. 2, and continues through Sunday, Aug. 5.
The sale spans six states and covers a distance of 690 miles with over 2,000 vendors taking part, according to the sale’s website. Everything from antiques, collectibles, tools, toys, clothing, housewares and virtually anything else one can imagine is for sale.
“This is a major tourism event that we, in Mercer County, benefit from,” said Karen Hackett, executive director of the Harrodsburg-Mercer County Tourist Commission. “It has a huge impact on our economy with local businesses seeing a significant increase in sales but it can be aggravating to commuters.”
“We are the only community in the state that benefits from two major yard sale events such as the 68 Yard sale and the 127 Yard sale,” Hackett said. “It helps our businesses but it can get aggravating.”
In addition to boosting the local economy, the sale also creates traffic issues, particularly north of Harrodsburg towards the Anderson County line.
“The event grew in popularity so much since its start in 1987 that the state assemble took action to help regulate the parking issues,” said Hackett.
Mercer County Sheriff Ernie Kelty said the main issue is people parking on the shoulder of the road, making illegal U-turns and stopping in the middle of the highway.
In 2016 the Kentucky state assembly passed a safety measure (189.450) making it illegal to park on the side of the highways.
“We want people to come out and enjoy the yard sale but we also have to make sure people are safe,” said Kelty. “It is not safe for anyone to park on the side of the highway, it is dangerous to walk there and to drive there.”
Kelty and his deputies will patrol the area heavily. They will also be available to anyone who needs help. He encourages
people to call if they require assistance.
“Our main concern is that everyone is safe. We encourage people to be careful and watchful of others,” said Kelty.
This year Mercer County has decided to add the national campaign for Shriners of ‘Kids helping Kids’ to the 127 yard sale event. Many businesses and schools have already participated, but the largest collection of lemonade stands will be seen during the 127 Yard sale.
Anyone can participate in the campaign by creating their own lemonade stand and donating the proceeds to Shriners.
Lawsons Jewelry (105 S. Main Street) will be collecting the funds for Shriners and the Arts Council of Mercer County (120 S. Main Street) has created free signs for anyone to use on their lemonade stands.
For more information, visit http://www.127yardsale.com. To contact the sheriff’s office call 734-4221.
To learn more, check out this week’s issue of the Harrodsburg Herald.