May 19, By Bill Parry
More than 120 homeowners set up rickety tables throughout Sunnyside Gardens yesterday as they peddled their goods as part of the first community-wide sidewalk tag sale.
The biggest cluster of vendors was located on 48th Street, followed by 46th Street. However, there were residents selling their wares throughout the district, which stretched from 43rd to 49th Streets, between Skillman and 39th Avenues.
While an afternoon shower sent buyers and sellers scrambling for cover at one point, the organizers and participants viewed the event as a success.
“For a first event, I was very pleased” said Patricia Dorfman, who organized the community tag sale with fellow Sunnyside Gardens resident Dorothy Morehead. However, “I guess I would have liked more people to have been involved.”
Meanwhile, Morehead said the event was going great until the rain started. However, she said, “It was well worth doing.”
Bargains to be found
While the sellers were able to get rid of items they no longer needed, bargain hunters had a field day. Neal Sugarman, a sax player for the Dap-Kings (a successful funk band), bought a bike for just $35. Dorfman found a leopard print coat for just $2.
As expected, young parents saw the greatest benefit. “There was one couple expecting a baby in October,” Morehead said. “They filled their car with baby stuff like strollers, clothes and toys.”
Some owners were surprised to find buyers for unusual items. At 39-58 46th St., Michael Beck sold a German hand cranked grain mill.
Meanwhile, Joe O’Sullivan, who lives across the street from Sunnyside Gardens Park, sold a refrigerator, a portable air conditioner and even a small window for a grand total over $700.
“The funny thing is I gave away a lot of stuff right before I learned about the sale,” O’Sullivan said. “It was a good day — can’t wait to do it again.”
However, Kathy Sullivan, who was combing through the items, said the event was also about connecting with neighbors. “To me, it was another example of what makes Sunnyside such a powerful community,” she said.