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43-mile yard sale crawling on

The Shenandoah Valley-Herald

HARRISONBURG — Harrisonburg and Rockingham County won’t sponsor the Route 11 Yard Crawl this year, despite its gradual extension into the area from Shenandoah County.

Officially, the 12th annual yard sale event will stretch 43 miles along U.S. 11 from Stephens City to New Market on Aug. 13. In reality, though, sales will likely sprout up in Rockingham County without prompting or support from local leaders.

“It looks to be creeping down [U.S.] 11 on its own near the Mauzy area,” Frank Tamberrino, president and chief executive officer of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Chamber of Commerce, said on Monday. “But we’re not going to have any official involvement.”

Tamberrino added that the main concern for the city, the county and the chamber is the traffic problems that the expected 2,000 to 3,000 visitors could bring with them.

“A number of questions came up last year,” he said. “One of them was if something happened along the road, how would we re-route people and get emergency vehicles through.”

While Tamberrino said the chamber didn’t discuss joining the crawl this year, he didn’t rule out the possibility of joining in the future.

“We’re waiting until it gets a little more prominent on its own,” he said. “Who knows what’s going to happen next year?”

Alerts And A New Contest
In addition to the length of the event route, the event’s time frame is also becoming more fluid.

The Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce is the event’s primary organizer. Cheri Wright, the chamber’s executive director, said while the crawl officially lasts one day, some vendors have started holding sales throughout the weekend.

“Due to [Virginia Department of Transportation] restrictions, it still has to be just one day, but it’s not,” she said. “We know it and VDOT knows it.”

Regardless of the actual length, safety will be a top priority for the county during the crawl.

The Shenandoah County Dispatch Center is teaming with the chamber for the third straight year to send alerts to shoppers’ phones if problems arise during the event.

Participants who send Wright their phone numbers will receive a text message and prerecorded call if inclement weather hits or an accident occurs on U.S. 11 or Interstate 81.

In a new promotion this year, the chamber is also holding a yard sale sign contest. Vendors with the most creative sign advertising their wares will receive a Yard Crawl T-shirt and a photo on the crawl’s Facebook page until next year’s event.

Wright said all 30 vendor spots at the Edinburg Mill and 10 of the 20 spots at Massanutten Military Academy in Woodstock have been booked. She said the crawl’s number and variety of sales will contribute to the event’s southward growth.

“People from Broadway have called asking about it,” she said. “It’s because they know they have one day that the audience is so big, so why wouldn’t they take advantage of it?”

For more information about the Yard Crawl, visit http://shencochamber.wix.com/route-11-yard-crawl To si.gn up for the dispatch alerts, email phone numbers to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).



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