By LOIS KINDLE
Itching to get out and bring a bit of normalcy back into your life?
The nonprofit GFWC Ruskin Woman’s Club will host its seasonal Fall Festival and Rummage Sale from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 14, and everyone in the community is invited to attend.
The event will take place at its historic clubhouse, 503 U.S. 41 S, across the street from Barbara’s Family Restaurant. Assorted vendors will set up their wares outdoors, and the rummage sale will take place inside. DJ Charlie is providing the music; snacks, pumpkin bread and water will be sold.
Organizers say the fundraiser is a great opportunity to find some holiday gifts from vendors like the Pampered Chef, Southern Rae’s Boutique, Leather Love, Amber Rose Designs and more, plus rummage sale deals on everything but the kitchen sink.
“Aside from furniture, you name it; we’ve got it,” said Barb Diana, event coordinator. “Everything for the sale was donated by club members, their families and friends. It’s all gently used items and priced to go.”
“Club members have also made fall- and Christmas- themed wreaths and table décor, and we’re expecting some children’s items, including a three-story doll house,” she said.
All proceeds will support the Ruskin Woman’s Club Scholarship Fund.
“Due to the pandemic, we’ve decided to cancel our annual Christmas Tea this year, one of our annual biggest fundraisers,” Diana said. “So we need a good turnout for the (Fall Festival and Rummage Sale) to be able to give scholarships in the spring.”
All CDC guidelines will be observed for the event.
Rummage sale shoppers will enter through the clubhouse’s main doors and exit through the kitchen. They’re required to wear masks inside, and there will be a limit on the number of folks who can shop inside at one time.
Treasurer Anne Frappier said the club is hoping for a great turnout. In fact, its members are counting on it.
Without public support, the club will have to decrease the number of scholarships it’s able to provide at its annual Scholarship Luncheon next May. Last spring, it awarded $8,000 to graduating students from East Bay and Lennard high schools, Hillsborough Community College and a woman seeking to further her education.
“We’re still planning other fundraisers, like a Sweetheart Tea on Saturday, Feb. 13, but hosting it will depend on what’s happening with the pandemic,” Frappier said.
She noted the club’s rental of the historic clubhouse’s apartments is helping maintain its exterior right now, but without fundraisers, finances are tight.
“It’s an old home, and we need to constantly take care of it,” she said.
If you’re unable to attend the GFWC Ruskin Woman’s Club Fall Festival and Rummage Sale but would still like to support the club and its charitable giving, you can send a tax-deductible donation in any amount to the Ruskin Woman’s Club, P.O. Box 547, Ruskin, FL 33575. Receipts are available upon request, Frappier said.