After a spring season of online auctions and other alternative Mennonite Central Committee relief sale events, the first in-person sales of 2021 returned in July.
The Kansas Mennonite Relief Sale sold two years’ worth of quilts and carried out many, but not all, of its typical activities July 2-3 at the Kansas State Fairgrounds in Hutchinson.
Traditionally held in April, the event was canceled in 2020 and delayed by three months this year.
Combined with efforts earlier in the year, the 2021 sale raised about $490,000. The last pre-pandemic event in 2019 raised over $500,000.
A week later, the South Dakota MCC Relief Sale held a mini auction and concert July 10 at Freeman Academy. A planned bike ride was canceled due to severe weather.
MCC relief sale coordinator Les Gustafson-Zook said several sales had successful online events in the spring across the U.S. and Canada.
The Kansas sale was not the first post-pandemic in-person event — the Gap Relief Auction in Quarryville, Pa., and Daviess County Relief Sale in Montgomery, Ind., both took place last August.
“In 2020, relief sales in the U.S. donated almost $2.5 million to MCC,” Gustafson-Zook said, “which was about 68% of what had been projected pre-COVID.”
Coming events include the Pennsylvania Relief Sale Coin Auction July 30 at Bareville Fire Hall in Leola, the Ohio Mennonite Relief Sale Aug. 6-7 at the Wayne County Fairgrounds in Wooster, the Northern Michigan Mennonite Relief Sale Aug. 6-7 at Oscoda County Fairgrounds in Mio, the Gap Relief Auction Aug. 13-14 at Solanco Fairgrounds in Quarryville, the Tristate Relief Sale mini events in July and August in Pennsylvania and Maryland, the Daviess County Relief Sale Aug. 21 in Montgomery, Ind., and the Arthur Mennonite Relief Sale Aug. 27-28 at the Otto Center in Arthur, Ill.