That wonderful day will soon be upon us. It’s the time when you finally get to purge all the unwanted stuff from your house! Whether it’s a well-loved sofa, an antique dresser that no longer matches the décor, or clothes from your former fashion self, this is the day for all your old stuff to find a new home, and the day for deals to be found for all those on the hunt for new stuff! It’s a fun day for shopping in the Glebe, people watching, or just getting out to see friends and take in the neighbourhood at its most festive!


Since its inception, the GCA’s Great Glebe Garage Sale (GGGS) has partnered with the Ottawa Food Bank to provide help to those in need. The Ottawa Food Bank supports 140 emergency food programs that feed around 45,000 people every month, 37 per cent of whom are children. By giving 10 per cent or more of sales to the Ottawa Food Bank, the GGGS generated just under $15,000 in donations in 2012. Let’s work together to do even better this year! Please give online, by mail, in person at the Glebe Community Centre on the day of, or to volunteers who will be walking around on that day.


As many of you know, it is best to be prepared for this big day. The more you can get done in advance, the more time you’ll be able to spend getting rid of stuff. Be forewarned – shoppers begin to pour in as early as 7 a.m.! Here are some important things to keep in mind before the day of the Great Glebe Garage Sale:

  • Read the Glebe Community Association’s web page on the GGGS at to learn about the city’s regulations on food, parking and block parties.
  • The day before, prepare quick snacks for yourself and the kids, realizing that you’ll be dashing into the house to grab a bite before running back outside to sell more stuff.
  • Use masking tape to write the prices of items the day before the sale. Remember, it should be no more than 10 to 25 per cent of what it originally cost.
  • Remove dust and dirt – while the stuff that’s been in your basement for a year may still be good, it looks even better all spiffed up.
  • Put everything that fits near the front door the night before so it is ready to go and easily accessible in the morning.
  • Remember the cash! Don’t forget to have a cash box with a lid and lots of change to get the day started.


The day of the Great Glebe Garage Sale is always a memorable day in the Glebe. Make sure you have the following readily available: cash, snacks, drinks, an extension cord to demonstrate electrical items, your garbage can and recycling bin. Remember, always be willing to bargain if you don’t want to haul all your stuff back into the house again. Also, make sure you are set up on your lawn or driveway. If you’re on the sidewalk, you could be ticketed by a city bylaw officer.

As for parking, if you need to be able to extract your car from the neighbourhood on the day of the sale, park at a friend’s house outside the Glebe the night before! On sale day, parking restrictions are going to be enforced on the emergency routes on Fifth, O’Connor, Strathcona and Metcalfe. Please be cognizant of emergency vehicles that are trying to drive through the neighbourhood for a call, and give them the right of way.


Baked goods such as muffins and cookies are not an issue to food inspectors, but raw meat is. If you are planning a barbeque at your house, you must have some sort of rubber mat or painted plywood flooring under the barbecue and a wash station available (perhaps a garden hose and soap). If you are unable to meet the city’s public health inspector’s requests, you may be asked to discontinue selling food. Please look at the city’s website at to familiarize yourself with the rules. If you have any questions please phone the city’s Special Events Public Health Inspector at 613-580-6744, extension 23476.


The Bank Street merchants participate in the GGGS as well, many offering items at reduced “garage sale” prices. Since shopping is always spectacular on Bank Street in the Glebe, this day is a great opportunity to stop in at your favourite store and see what deals abound. Once the day is over and you’ve gotten rid of old stuff, chatted with friends and neighbours, purchased cookies from the kids down the street, bought a crazy new hat and arranged to pay your 10 percent to the Food Bank, sit back, put your feet up, and count your profits! If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact Amy Mathurin at

Amy Mathurin is the volunteer coordinator of the Great Glebe Garage Sale for the Glebe Community Association.



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