WELLSVILLE - A bright, sunny day greeted vendors and bargain-hunters alike on Saturday, as the Wellsville Revitalization Committee hosted the 10th annual Village Yard Sale.
Connie Carmichael from the WRC recalled the disappointment of last year, when things did not progress according to plan. "It was so pitiful," she said. "We got rained out, and then our rain day got rained out." This year, however, there was perfect weather for a village-wide yard sale, with sellers setting up tables on their front porches, sidewalks or in public spaces next to the Wellsville Fire Station on Main Street and in the parking lot of Save-a-Lot on Wells Avenue.
The grocery store, owned by Henry Nemenz, was holding its customer appreciation day alongside the sale, with games, giveaways and free hot dogs, chips and pop for attendees. Nemenz emphasized the importance of giving back to the people who support his business on such an occasion. "Any community we have a store in, we get involved with it as much as we can," he said.
Gia Pucci, 9, (right) did a brisk trade at her lemonade stand on Main Street Saturday during the 10th annual Village Yard Sale in Wellsville. She was assisted for a spell by her friend, Ali Hull, 10, (left), also of Wellsville. (Photo by Richard Sberna)
Originally conceived as a fundraiser for the now-defunct Fix-Up/Clean-Up Committee, the Revitalization Committee has held the event since 2010, with yard sale permit fees going to support its activities, such as the completion of the floodwall mural project by local artist Gina Hampson. "We're doing that to help revitalize our Main Street," Carmichael said. "There's a lot to be done."
The WRC is also lending material support to Hampson's latest work in the village, a mural outside the Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie 772 on Main Street. Part of the committee's Main Street Project, it depicts Alfred Eisenstaedt's famous photograph "V-J Day in Times Square," flanked by scenes of Wellsville's Main Street during that era. Funds will also go toward the "Before I Die" public art project.
Sellers included Lois Livolsi, who set up shop under the shade of the tree next to Wellsville FD, along with Missy Sposato of Calcutta, who assisted her with the sale. Sposato said the big sellers had been toys and games, although shoppers also looked through the clothes racks and kitchen items as well.
Livolsi's sale was the fifth of the day for one such shopper, Felipa Lambo, who stated that it would not be her last. "I still have to go there," she said, pointing south on Main to other tables of goods. Lambo was shopping with her mother, Mauricia Coles, both of Lisbon Street. The pair departed pleased with Lambo's purchase of a gold picture frame for $2.
Gia Pucci, 9, set up a lemonade stand in front of her Main Street home, doing a brisk business with the shoppers passing by for $.50 per cup. Gia had decided to split the profits from her sale with village resident Penny Rogers, who helps stray animals in the village with food, lodging and veterinary care.
Rogers' cause came to Gia's attention following an incident with her own pet last winter when Gia was sick. "One of my cats got out and ran away, so she helped find it," Gia said. She says her next fundraising effort will be aimed at helping the homeless and underprivileged in Wellsville.