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The Kansan - Newton, KS
  • Annual MCC relief sale continues today

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  • As many as 1,000 volunteers — many from Newton — will come together this weekend in Hutchinson to put on one of the largest Mennonite Central Committee sales in North America. There will be traditional Mennonite foods, handmade Amish blankets and a wide variety of other items sold to raise money for Mennonite ministries.
    A 1948 Packard and a 1950 Chevrolet highlight a list of antique vehicles that includes some tractors from the ’40s and ’50s.
    Organizers expect as many as 20,000 visitors for the sale that usually brings in about $500,000 for Mennonite ministries around the world.
    “It is kind of miraculous,” said Jerry Toews of Goessel, who volunteers by getting antique vehicles ready for the sale. “The one in Kansas is one of the biggest. There might be one in Canada that is bigger,” he said.
    Many states around the country have these sales that sell donated items that are in new or like-new condition utilizing the help of volunteers. The entire sales from around the country will bring in about $5 million organizers said.
    “It works on the premise of a lot of people doing a little,” Toews said. A lot of people in various churches put in a little time each – some just a couple of hours – to make the sale happen.
    All of the events are at the state fairgrounds in Hutchinson and most of the fairgrounds will be utilized.
    Saturday the day begins at 6:30 with breakfast. Sale of priced items starts at 8 a.m., and there will be a silent auction from 8 a.m. until noon.
    An auction for children will be held at 10 a.m., and the food court opens again at 10:30 a.m.
    The event will end with a surplus auction at 2:30. Items that have not previously sold will be auctioned at this event.
    A large area will be set aside for selling plants, seeds and trees.
    The MCC works in more than 50 countries around the world to try to help impoverished people and work toward peace and justice.
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