ST. CLAIRSVILLE — The Belmont County Tourism office stays busy preparing for area events and promoting area attractions. The tourism office is now promoting the Annual Historic National Road Yard Sale Days, frequently referred to by several other names: the US 40 Yard Sale, Route 40 Yard Sale, and Route 40 Flea Market. "No matter what you call it, the event features miles of yard sales that many look forward to," said Barbara Ballint, executive director of Belmont County Tourism.
Stretching 824 miles across the nation from Baltimore, Md., to St. Louis, Mo., and passing across the center of Ohio, the six-state long yard sale is reportedly the longest continuous garage/yard sale in the whole country. The event started in 2004 when an antique store owner in Dublin, Indiana had an idea to take her collectibles to the streets to sell her items to motorist passing by. This year marks the "Sweet 16" 16th anniversary of the event.
The bumper-to-bumper extravaganza runs through some very historic areas of Ohio, from Belmont County on the east to Guernsey County on the west. According to Ballint, the event will take place Wednesday May 329th through Sunday June 2rd.
"Belmont County Tourism Council promotes this event, as we have visitors from close and far away, who will be traveling National Road-US Rte. 40 to shop for other’s unwanted items. Belmont County residents go through their storage, attic, basement, garage, and any other place that they may have items that could turn into treasures for others. It is said that you can find everything from antiques to furniture, artwork, glassware, and pottery," Ballint said.
Visitors look forward to traveling US 40, visiting historic areas and looking for bargains. Ballint explained the residents of Belmont County set up tables from Bridgeport to Morristown as well as many other areas of the county.
"Some people set their tables up from dawn to dusk every day of the event. Others set up just for one or two days," Ballint said. The tourism office offers free "Yard Sale" signs while supplies last. For more information, and to get a free sign, stop by the Belmont County Tourism office, located in the Ohio Valley Mall or call 740-695-4359.