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Booths nearly double for sale, craft fair

BEMIDJI - With nearly 200 booths offering crafts to items you might find tucked in someone's garage, the 11th annual Indoor Garage Sale and Craft Fair will be bigger than ever.

Shoppers can choose from items at more than 180 booths, nearly twice last year's number, at the event, which will be from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in the Sanford Center.

"It's easier to come here and shop 190 booths instead of drive around and try to hit that many," said Roger Swanson, executive director of the event center.

Admission cost $2 per person and tickets are available at the door. Coupons inside the Pioneer today and Saturday offer $1 off entry. Parking at the Sanford Center is free.

Previous years have drawn 1,400 to 1,800 shoppers, but that number could increase with booths filling the Sanford Center's arena and concourse for an event presented by the Pioneer and the facility.

The partnership gives the Sanford Center an event it can host on what would have been an open date. Admission proceeds go toward the Pioneer's Newspaper In Education program, which provides curriculum materials and training to help teachers bring real world applications to every area of classroom instruction from kindergarten through high school.

In the event's first year, there were about 30 booths inside the National Guard Armory. The number of vendors doubled the next year.

In 2011, the event changed locations to the John Glas Fieldhouse on the Bemidji State University campus. The number of vendors jumped to 99.

Swanson said one factor weighing in favor of good attendance is Saturday's forecast. The National Weather Service in Grand Forks expects a high near 48 with a 50 percent of rain.