November 17, 2004
Original Western oil paintings, china dish sets and furniture are just some of the items available today through Saturday at the annual Kiwanis flea market in Mesa.
Dozens of tables and about a half-acre lot are covered with leftover items from estate sales organized and operated by the Kiwanis Club of the Superstitions in Mesa. Club members run estate sales at least once a week in Leisure World, an adult community in an unincorporated county island surrounded by Mesa, for a percentage of the gross income, said Henry Armstrong, co-chairman of the flea market.
Club members and volunteers spent a long day Tuesday pulling items out of four large mobile storage bins that have housed them since April on the northeast corner of Mountain View Memorial Gardens, which is also the spot for the flea market.
The club also rented five storage rooms at a local storage center to hold the rest of the items, said Jon Meyers, the flea market’s chairman.
"There’s some wonderful things here and it’s a good buy," Meyers said.
There are entertainment centers, televisions, microwaves and stereos. Tables are covered with kitchen items, towels and bedding. Old frames of all sizes, collectible knickknacks and outdoor patio sets are also for sale.
"We have 20-some framed Indian needlepoint pictures that are gorgeous," said Charlotte Manning, a former president of the Kiwanis Club. "If we don’t have it, you don’t need it."
All proceeds from the sales will go to various charities the Kiwanis Club supports, including the Salvation Army, Phoenix Children’s Hospital and the Child Crisis Center. Leftover items after the sale will be given to St. Vincent de Paul, Salvation Army and Save the Family.
"Not only do we have good deals, but you’re supporting the community," Armstrong said. "We feel like we’ve done well in our occupations and we want to give back."
Kiwanis International is a worldwide service organization dedicated to benefit children of all ages at local, state and international levels. The Kiwanis Club of the Superstitions, which began in 1976, has 47 members.
Last year, the club delivered two trailers loaded with furniture to two Mesa families for Christmas. A post office had received two letters for Santa from the families and called the club to help out.
The flea market began more than a dozen years ago at a former park and swap in Apache Junction. The twoday event made $160 for the club, said Armstrong, also the president of the Kiwanis Club of the Superstitions Foundation.
Now a four-day sale, the flea market brought in $6,000 last year. This year’s flea market is expected to raise about $10,000 and bring in more than a thousand people, Meyers said.
Check it out
What: Kiwanis Club flea market
When: Noon to 5 p.m. today, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: Mountain View Memorial Gardens, 80th Street between Main Street and University Drive in Mesa