Bargain hunters can break out the fanny packs on Saturday morning as the 17e The annual Route 11 crawl begins at 7 a.m. The event always takes place on the second Saturday in August and covers over 43 miles of garage sales and commercial sales along the Old Valley Pike, U.S. Route 11. According to the event’s website, the official crawl east of New Market (I-81 Exit 264) to Stephens City (I-81 Exit 307).
The Route 11 Yard Crawl has become a huge draw for bargain hunters and a source of revenue for residents, businesses, and nonprofits participating in this well-attended event. Localities see revenue added to their coffers through accommodations, meals, and sales taxes.
After a hiatus during the Covid pandemic, the Yard Crawl Scavenger Hunt returns this year, along with an app, the Free Traipse App. By visiting 15 of the 43 businesses, attendees can get an official Yard Crawl t-shirt and enter a draw for a $100 gas card. Download the free app here.
Sarah Paul, a Middletown resident whose home is along Rt. 11, has had garage sales in the past, but not this year. She said, “We’ve sold things every two years, but for me the best part is hanging out on the porch and people watching!”
Ms. Paul’s daughter, Elise, couldn’t contain her excitement as she said, “Yard Crawl? Fun! Money!” Elise’s sister Abigail added, “It’s great because you can get rid of the things you need in your house and make a profit!”
Tina Maddox, from Strasbourg, says: “My husband and I have been going to the crawl every year since it started. We withstood the searing heat of the ravine washers and everything. We came home with full trucks and there was a time when we had to go home, unload and go again.
My favorite story goes back many years when we stopped at a house where two gentlemen were swinging on their porch swing. My husband came up and sat between them and asked how they were. After they recovered from being stunned, they chatted briefly before we left. Every year after that we would go there and do the same thing. We all looked forward to it every year. Recently, my husband met one of these men who worked nearby. Small world!”
Alex Shaw, a Stephens City native who now lives in County Durham, North Carolina, said, “Last year’s Yard Crawl was my first comeback in almost 10 years. It was so much busier and so much more expensive than I remembered from my early years.
I loved going there so much and have found many wonderful treasures in the past, but I probably won’t make the trip this year.”
A number of local businesses will benefit from discounts and special sales during the event. Those offering “Crawl Specials” will display gold mylar balloons outside their business. Shoppers can expect special offers such as half-price or “buy one, get one” (BOGO) items, curbside sales, giveaways, event-related items, sweepstakes for prizes, and more.
Teresa Lamb of Front Royal Strites Donuts says she’ll be selling her tasty wares on Rt. 11 at Dixie Glass and Mirror starting at 7 a.m.
The official Yard Crawl t-shirts are collectible, with a different color each year. This year it’s 17e The Crawl t-shirt is a heather royal blue and retails for $15 and $20, depending on size. They can be purchased at these locations:
- Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation in Middletown
- Edinburgh Mill Museum in Edinburgh
- Main Street Classics in Stephens City
- Route 11 Chips to Mount Jackson
- Edinburgh Flea Market
- The Strasbourg Emporium in Strasbourg
- Shenandoah County Chamber in Woodstock
- Shenandoah Valley Flea Market in New Market
- Traveler’s Treasures in Woodstock
The Route 11 Yard Crawl is a collaborative effort between Shenandoah County Tourism, the County Chamber and the cities of Strasburg, Woodstock, Edinburg, Mount Jackson, New Market, Middletown and Stephens City.
For more information on the Crawl, find out about available vendor spaces or participating companies, visit www.Route11YardCrawl.org or call 540-459-2542.