By Brian Livingston / firstname.lastname@example.org
The Meridian Star
The consensus among those who were laying out their wares for all to see Thursday during the annual U.S. 11 Antique Alley and Yard Sale was that the crowds have been good and the weather even better.
"This is our fifth year and we have seen good crowds coming through," said Carol Blackburn of Newton. "I just love doing this. This is the only time we put our stuff out for sale. We just drive our RV over and stay all four days."
The five-state event that began Thursday runs through Sunday. It covers more than 500 miles of U.S. Highway 11 from Meridian to Bristol, Va.
The event will be celebrated in each county up and down the U.S. 11 corridor. Each town along the route plans its own events, such as festivals, antique sales, carnivals, flea markets and yard sales held in conjunction with the "Happenin'."
Because of the addition of 252 miles in 2002, the days have been expanded to four. Antique dealers, flea market vendors, and yard sale enthusiasts are expected to line the route from Meridian through Birmingham, Ala., Dade County, Ga., and Chattanooga and Knoxville in Tennessee with Bristol, Va., being the end of the event.
Nancy Gardner of Union was shopping Thursday with her mom and dad. She said she was looking for colored glass to add to her bottle tree.
"This is very interesting," Gardner said. "You find some neat things and you actually learn a great deal from the vendors as each one has unique items they can tell you about."
And the items were vast and varied.
From arts and crafts to antique furniture and farming equipment, anything and everything was on the agenda. At one spot just south of Russell there were even vehicles for sale along with a couple of motorcycles. And if you were in the market for a mobile home, believe it or not, one was prominently displayed for sale between Russell and Toomsuba.