Alabaster couple gives away belongings in 2nd annual free garage sale

By Ashley Nix

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) Garage sales are famous for good deals, but Saturday Dec. 4, a big sale will give everything away for absolutely free, no strings attached.  It's taking place in Alabaster and the organizers Ben and Cassidy Nelson say their faith plays a big part in why they're doing this.

There's already four trailers full of "stuff," not to mention a garage full of donations already brought in. Clothes, toys, furniture, electronics and even wedding dresses are piled up. The Nelsons have also wiped out their personal possessions.

"The bigger the better, we think sometimes," said Cassidy. "When we strip things down and we separate our wants from needs, we have the opportunity to live a more simple, loving, caring life."

Cassidy had the idea last year, while in a Bible study after reading the book "Crazy Love."  December 2009 was the first garage give-a-way.

"It talks about being the love of God and actually living that out and doing it in crazy ways.  Jesus did.  If he asks us to give up our possessions, then we give up our possessions."

Ben says last year's experience was an eye opener.  "A lot more people in need than we imagined," the 24-year old said.  "We thought there was going to be a lot of people coming to get what was free.  It was people really looking for something who needed it."

Ben says it was people looking for toys for their children's Christmas, furniture for a bare home.  Last year about 700 people came.  This year, more donations and more people are expected.

"It's incredible to know we've inspired other garage give-a-ways in other places, other states, other cities. I hope it's an idea and an action that spreads," Cassidy said.

"The idea of no strings attached." Ben said.  "We're not saying you must bring your pay check and we must have this and this to know you are eligible.  But we say come and get what you need."

The Garage Give-a-Way starts at 9 a.m. at 109 Berryhill Lane in Alabaster.

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