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Shopping for kids can be expensive. This week marks the fourth year about 400 families band together for a huge sale here in Springfield. The event happens twice a year, and was started eight years ago by a group of mothers who wanted to creatively beat the continued rising cost of shopping for their kids, while cleaning out their closets. KSMU’s Theresa Bettmann stopped by on the drop-off day, and has this report.
[Sound: Kids and Carts]
Looking around the massive floor of Remington’s in Springfield, the building has taken on a department store-like appearance. Racks and racks of childrens’ clothes as well as tables upon tables of toys, accessories, books and more fill the huge room. Mary Leffingwell is the event coordinator for the sale conducted by Just Between Friends, or JBF. “Just Between Friends is the nation’s largest childrens’ and maternity consignment sales event. So what that means is that moms can recycle those all gently-used items that their kids no longer need. They’re are in your closets, they’re in the toy box , the kids have outgrown them, but they’re in great shape. And so, it’s a place where you can come and earn 70 percent as a consigner on all of the things that you sell,” said Leffingwell.
Leffingwell says they’re done taking items for this week’s sale. But they are already gearing up toward the upcoming spring sale.“It goes with the nature of cleaning your closets. So we have it in the spring and in the fall. In the fall right now we have all fall and winter clothes. Plus everything else is year around,” said. Leffingwell.
JBF is manned by numerous volunteers who work this event every year. Typically there can be up to 20 or 40 working on the sales floor at any given time.“I see how it starts from an empty room to, you know, craziness. It’s crazy out there,” said Batson.
That’s Rebekah Batson, a mother of three who calls herself “glorified consigner” andvolunteer. She says that this is her sixth sale so far and that she loves it. “I love the sale because I’m a mom. I’m just a normal, ordinary mom who has three kids under the age of six. So we are constantly changing out clothes. Every season they grow out of something. So this way I can come and take their small clothes, that they don’t fit into anymore, turn it around, and make some money to buy the next season’s items. It just makes sense,” said Batson.
The sale opens to the public on Wednesday, September 15th at 9a.m. On that day there will be a two-dollar admission that benefits Cox Health Breast Care Fund. The sale will continue through Saturday. Hours of operation are 9a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. Click here for a link to more information about the event on our website. For KSMU News, I’m Theresa Bettmann.