The first Rummage RAMPage, the community sale designed to prevent resuable items from going into the trash, has diverted 22 tons of furniture and other items from the landfull.

The sale, held July 29 to Aug. 2, at the Ames Intermodal Facility, 129 Hayward Ave., also raised $5,000 for local non-profit agencies, according to a news release from the city.

“Because this event had never been held before, we didn’t know what to expect,” said Merry Rankin, Iowa State University sustainability director, and sustainability coordinator for the city of Ames. ” The results were amazing. The donations, the volunteers, and the number of shoppers were all far greater than we had anticipated.”

Because many leases in Ames terminate at the end of July, relocating ISU students and community members often discard items that may still be useable. During these weeks, the City of Ames Resource Recovery Plant (RRP) often sees an influx of couches, wooden furniture, clothing, and more as renters attempt to meet their move out requirements, according to RRP Superintendent Bill Schmittt.

At the same time, new students moving in are often in need of furniture and household essentials. The Rummage RAMPage was a collaborative effort to pair unwanted items with others seeking low-cost options for furnishing a home.

“This is the time we see working, usable items piling up near trash bins, on curbsides, or in front yards and yet we know other people are looking for these same items,” Schmitt said.

Schmitt said more than 60 couches were kept out of the landfill and tons of other items that were still in good condition were also sold.

This helps our recycling and processing of materials at the Resource Recovery facility,” Schmitt said. “Also, not only did shoppers appreciate bargains, our donors seemed pleased their items were going to good homes.”

Rummage RAMPage was staffed by volunteers from local non-profits. Residents donated items to the sale, and the sale was open to the public. More than 18 local non-profit groups volunteered time to work the event.

Organizers are planning on holding a Rummage RAMPage 2017 beginning at the end of July and extending into early August. Please watch the City of Ames website for details about the 2017 event at www.cityofames.org.