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Ovation: Oprah Winfrey’s Yard Sale.

11/03/2013

oprahI will never hold another yard sale.  Never.  I’ve tried to turn unwanted items into extra spending money by holding these sales but find them to be an extraordinary amount of work with very little reward.  Instead, I find that I prefer to give these things away or donate them to a charity such as Goodwill Industries.  So, instead of setting things aside for an eventual yard sale, I make periodic trips to the local drop off point.

Of course, if I was a billionaire, I needed to de-clutter my mansions and raise money for my leadership academy in South Africa, I might auction off a few things.  Oprah Winfrey did just that yesterday in Santa Barbara, California, when she auctioned off items (furniture, keepsakes, autographs, electric bicycles, light fixtures, workout equipment, art, home furnishings) from some of her homes including residences in Indiana, Hawaii, Santa Barbara and Chicago.  Most all of Oprah’s fans could find something at the sale.

“What’s nice about this collection is that there are items for the person who wants to buy something for $100 or $200 and there are items you can spend $20,000 to $50,000 for.  There is quite a variety of items here.  That was the whole idea of what she wanted.  That was the idea of this yard sale – it’s quite a yard sale.” – Frank Kaminski, President and CEO of Kaminski Auctions.

The first item for sale was a poster from The Color Purple that Winfrey had proudly displayed in her office for a long time.  The starting bid was $2,000 and Oprah was blown away by the price.  When the poster eventually sold for $4,000 Oprah was shocked and thought fans were paying too much for her old stuff!

All of the proceeds of her auction and yard sale will go to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation College Fund.

It’s certainly not fair to compare Oprah’s yard sale to any sale that I might host in my front yard, but I’m quite certain that it I might consider another sale if I could afford to hire an auction house to do all the work.

On second thought, no … I will never hold another yard sale.  Will you?

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7 Comments
  1. All you’ve got to do is ask Oprah round for a cup of coffee whilst helping you to sell your goods. And if she can’t make it, can she just mention the date and time of your yard sale on one of her shows and I’m sure everything you’ve got will see quick sharp mate.
    Now, why would a billionaire need to do an auction to raise funds for her own company? Why not give the goods away to people who want or need the items. The interest she earns every day must be mind boggling, unless she needs the money!

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  2. A couple of years ago when I downsized from a 3 bdrm home to a one-room cottage, I sold lots of stuff through Craiglist and gave away tons of other stuff to thrift shops that support local non-profits. It much easier than a garage sale, so no I won’t do one — but I do like to visit them.

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  3. You got give Oprah credit for supporting this cause with money and notorierty. If I had a yard sale, all of my stuff on sale would tally one of her item’s asking price.

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  4. Never! Way too much work for a the little reward. I also donate to charity & hubby sells individual items on Kajiji (or whatever it’s called).

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  5. After two garage sales, we expected we’d have another in a few years. So we got in the habit of putting stuff in a box marked “gar sale” in the basement. Decided a couple of years ago to round up stuff for Goodwill instead, and that one box became ten huge bags of donations. Much easier. I do have a couple of specialized things I’m going to sell on Ebay ’cause nobody would think to shop for them at Goodwill.

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