Residents turn out for Cumberland's Free Bay
By Naomi Prioleau firstname.lastname@example.org
March 29, 2014 at 10 p.m.
Residents patiently waited for the doors of Cumberland Presbyterian Church to open to shop for clothes, books, knick-knacks and more free of charge Saturday morning.
The church hosted the first of its biannual Free Bay Yard Sale aimed at giving free items to any and all residents with no strings attached.
"The reason we started this was for community outreach," Deacon Johanna Eppley said. "Talking with the community is just as important as giving and if you can give without charge you should do it."
Regardless of socioeconomic status, the church invited the public to sort through spring and summer clothes and more. Residents, families and children were all allowed to take seven items each.
Before the doors even opened, there was a large crowd of people waiting to come in according to Deacon Jean Beauchamp.
"There was such a big crowd outside when we came that we could only let 20 people in at a time," she said. "As five would leave then we'd let in more and they've loved this. It's meant to share with people in the community."
Reverend William "Rusty" Rustenhaven III said he was happy with the amount of people who came out because it was an event that was simply focused on giving.
"I'm thrilled that people are coming. We're happy to share and care," he said. "This has nothing to do with how rich or how poor you are, it's about enjoying being together and coming together."
He said he placed an emphasis on not having any preaching or sermons at the yard sale because he didn't want to turn people away. Rustenhaven added that he hoped those who took advantage of the free items they got at the yard sale would benefit their finances in some way.
"If you get free items here then you have more money to use on groceries or bills," he said.
Another yard sale will take place in the fall.