SPRINGFIELD, NJ — Residents got their first taste of autumn this past weekend, just in time for the annual September garage sale. Residents who wished to participate were required to sign up for a free permit with the township ahead of the weekend.

Sale hours were between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on Saturday Sept. 12 and 13 and despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many residents had their driveway showrooms ready for business, including Garden Oval resident Ron Ghilino. Within the early hours on Saturday, Ghilino sold three bicycles.

“You have people creeping around here around 7:00 a.m. this morning looking to see if you have your stuff out yet.” Ghilino said. “We’ve had people looking in our garage windows, you get [to see] the real collector types [of people.]”

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Along with bike equipment, Ghilino was also selling old records dating back to the 1930s and 1940s he took home from his parents’ house a few years ago.

“I remember [my parents’] having [these records] when I was a kid,” Ghilino said. “I have a Tommy Dorsey [vinyl], who was probably famous during the 1930s and a “Good Year Christmas” album with Carol Burnett.” “I’m just looking to see what the value might be.”

Newbrook Lane resident Kristen Labazzo was also out bright and early on Saturday to have her traditional coffee on the porch with her neighbor before the sales began. Labazzo and her husband were selling old toys and musical instruments their kids used to use when they were younger.

“I have two teenage daughters, and they have a lot of stuff they want to get rid of, and we figured this would be a good opportunity to [to do so],” Labazzo said.

Labazzo ran a successful sale back in June and was hoping to have the same outcome a second time around.

One of the buyers who was interested in Labazzo’s instruments was Springfield resident and Rutgers senior, Josh Friedman and his friends. Friedman uses the town wide garage sales to search for new items for his house.

“Generally, the people in Springfield have good music and entertainment [items] so we like to go around every year and get as much as we can,” Friedman said.

There were more than just vintage, antique items for sale over the weekend. Instead of having a typical garage sale, the Gabriele family decided to have a honey sale on Evergreen Ave.

Desiderio (Desi) Gabriele, his wife Fernanda and their daughter Elisa set up a stand in their driveway selling homemade honey at $15 a unit, made from the bees that Des keeps at his Springfield home.

“I sell every day,” Gabriele said.

Desi has been beekeeping for over 30 years and has been using the power of social media in recent years, catching the attention of The Start Ledger and NJ.com. Elisa has also been selling the family’s honey at her house for the past decade.  

“We always have honey available throughout the year, we had a really good harvest and pulled over 1,000 pounds of honey this spring,” Elisa said.

The Gabriele family sold three cases of honey by noon and with the weather on their side the entire weekend, they were confident that there would be plenty of buyers would buzzing for something sweet.

For those who have items that they were not able to sell last weekend and would like them to be removed, Springfield’s bulk pickup will take place on Wednesday Sept. 23.