Big Grab weekend is here

BLYTHEWOOD/FAIRFIELD – The Big Grab is here. The annual curbside crawl of yard sales, known as The Big Grab, will happen this Friday, Sept. 11, from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 12, from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. It will encompass a 50-mile community network that includes Blythewood, Ridgeway and Winnsboro.

The route is a figure 8 loop that takes shoppers from I-77 up Hwy 21 to Blythewood, then to Ridgeway and on to Hwy 34 to Winnsboro where it will loop through down town and back onto Hwy 321 S. to Hwy 21 and back to Blythewood.

“It started out at 25 miles as a way to bring people into our communities and to enjoy small towns again, as well as a way to help our citizens put a little money in their pockets,” Gene Stephens, president of the Fairfield County Chamber of Commerce, said. “The Big Grab has always been a successful weekend for the Blythewood/Ridgeway/Winnsboro communities and I think this year will be no exception. We are, of course, asking everyone, both vendors both vendors and shoppers to observe the CDC restrictions – wear masks, use hand sanitizer and social distance,” Stephens said.

Vendors will set up along the roadsides from sunrise to sunset offering everything at rock-bottom prices (and of course negotiations are expected!)

“Since its inception, The Big Grab has not only drawn shoppers into local businesses, it has also drawn vendors from as far away as New Jersey and Florida,” Stephens said.

The event has also been a boon to local churches, who have capitalized on The Big Grab as a major annual fundraiser – not only selling their own wares, but also renting out prime selling space to vendors who otherwise would not have had a spot along the route.

First United Methodist Church in Winnsboro has set the bar for other churches, raising approximately $10,000 last year. Large church venues in Blythewood include Buelah UMC on Hwy 321 and Fair Lawn United Methodist Church on Hwy 21.

In Blythewood, Mayor Brian Franklin expressed his gratitude to all the entities that have come together to potentially make what he said he hopes will be the most successful Big Grab event ever.

“It’s not just about vendors setting up tables and selling their wares,” Franklin said. “It’s a time for people to shop, eat, walk, talk and experience what our small towns of Blythewood, Ridgeway and Winnsboro are really about.

“We hope to see vendors set up all over downtown Blythewood and beyond. Some set-up areas will be free while there will be a small charge for others,” Franklin said. “Secure your spot today so you’ll be ready to sell on the big (grab) day.”

Vendors will begin trickling into the area soon, Stephens said, setting up Thursday evening, Sept. 10, so they will be ready to sell at first light on Friday, Sept. 7.

“It’s exciting,” Stephens said. “My phone has been ringing off the hook!”

For information about the Big Grab vendor sites and other Big Grab information for both Blythewood and Fairfield County (Winnsboro and Ridgeway), call 803-635-4242.