June is here, and with it comes a favorite, yet somehow obscure, event on Evansville’s East Side: The annual Alvord Boulevard yard sale. Stretching 10 blocks of South Alvord from Harper Elementary School to Washington Avenue, boulevard residents stage the sale on the first Saturday in June, and it is a favorite among area scavengers.
Shoppers can peruse standard yard sale wares such as dishes, small kitchen appliances, and books, but you can also score antique furniture and other cool finds from the many unique homes along one of the city’s most beautiful streets.
The Alvord sale spans an entire neighborhood but is only promoted through yard signs that pop up about three days prior to each year’s events, so awareness mostly is spread by word of mouth. Even longtime Evansville residents sometimes fail to catch the annual sale because they forget which day each year it’s held.
Shopping traditionally starts around 6 a.m. Saturday and usually runs through noon. The sale is popular enough that we encourage you get there early in the day. Here are our top five tips to make your morning shopping a win.
Bring Plenty of Cash
Remember, this is a giant yard sale. Some sellers may accept card payments, but don’t bank on it. Bring as much cash as you anticipate you’ll need, and maybe a bit more: On your way out, you may discover that antique Lenox milk glass vase you need to complete your set.
Do Not Drive on the Boulevard
Treat sale day as if it were Halloween: Drive carefully and be on the lookout for lots of pedestrians. The best guidance is to not take your car onto Alvord at all unless you’re doing curbside pickup for a large item you’ve purchased.
Pay Attention to Side Streets
Expanding on our second tip, make the trip easy for yourself and park on a side street near Alvord. You may have to parallel park, but there will be plenty of spots open within walking distance of the boulevard. A bonus is that many residents on surrounding streets stage their own yard sales to coincide with their neighbors on Alvord, so be sure to scan the yards near where you park.
Bring A Means for Carrying Your Purchases
The Alvord sale covers a mile. Keep this in mind before you wind up hauling your finds from block to block. Grab a couple of reusable shopping bags, a folding shopping cart, or even a suitcase — those have been spotted — to help you lug your goods from one sale to the next.
Prioritize hydration and sun protection
The day of the Alvord sale has in recent history been hot, hot, hot. Whether you’re on the hunt for a deal or casually window shopping, this is not a time to skimp on sun safety. Layer on sunblock and invest in a hat to keep the sun’s rays off your face. Bring along a portable water bottle so you can stay hydrated and fill up at the lemonade stands that have been known to dot Alvord during the sale. A pro tip: The 100 to 500 blocks of South Alvord are the shadiest parts of the boulevard and will provide a cooler spot to take a rest.