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Sheldon's overstock costumes up for sale

By Ruth Nerhaugen, Contributor

The annual dilemma is approaching: What to wear for Halloween?

Costume hunters need look no further than the Red Wing City Hall parking lot off Bush Street, where the Sheldon Theatre Costume Shop plans a unique sort of garage sale on Saturday.

The shop is downsizing its collection of vintage, handmade and “outlandish” garments for men, women and children, shop Chairman Sara Shannon said.

From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., volunteers will be selling garments, complete outfits and some accessories in the parking lot that is adjacent to both City Hall and the Bush Street building where the costume shop is located in the basement.

“We’ve got such a variety of things,” Shannon said. Among vintage garments there are coats and suits for men, old prom and wedding dresses and suits for women, and smaller garments children could wear. Plus, of course, there are the theatrical costumes Shannon described as “outlandish.”

A lack of space in the basement costume shop prompted them to hold the sale, she said. “The racks are packed, and we have a lot of duplicates. People are so generous” donating items to the shop, plus garments acquired for plays have been accumulating.

Installation of a new heating system left them with less space than previously, she added. Culling the items they are less likely to need for productions will help prevent crushing the remaining garments, Shannon said.

“If you’re looking for ideas for Halloween,” she said, volunteers will be on hand to consult about putting together a look for the big day. She pointed out, however, that there is no dressing room. Costumes will have to be tried on over clothing.

Pricing will be uniform and “not over-the-top expensive,” she said. Although the committee had not yet set the price structure, she expected “nothing over $20, with lots of stuff in the lower end” — especially toward the end of the sale.

Proceeds will stay with the Costume Shop and enable the committee to undertake upgrades.

The shop held a similar sale shortly before Halloween about three years ago and it was quite a success. This year, the sale is scheduled during the Fall Festival of the Arts in hopes of drawing lots of shoppers.

Organizers anticipate good weather so they can use the parking lot adjacent to the shop, but are prepared to move to the Sheldon Theater if it rains.

If you go …

What: Sheldon Costume Shop sale

When: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12

Where: City Hall parking lot