Ballardites band together to help woman in need

It began with a post from “Lurkerbee” in the My Ballard forum asking for ideas on how to sell a few possessions, including her grandmother’s jewelry, to raise money for a rent payment. “I need to come up with some money in the next couple of days,” she explained. “It really is tough being unemployed.”

The forum post exploded as readers offered ideas on how to help. One idea was to throw a yard sale, and WildernessBarbie offering the front yard of her house to hold the event. “Hey! This is shaping up to be a plan!” wrote PennyGirl. “Could we patch something together in the next 24 hours?”

That was Thursday night, and this Saturday morning, nearly two dozen Ballardites dropped off hundreds of items to sell at a yard sale to raise money for Lurkerbee. A steady stream of people bought clothing, books, furniture and even a chandelier, raising over $900.

“It’s amazing,” said Lurkerbee at the event, who doesn’t want her real name publicized. “I don’t know what to say.” A few hours later, she posted a note on the forum. “Thank you all for your time, your emotional support, your items for the sale, thank you WildernessBarbie for the use of your home, and most of all, thank you all so much for caring about a complete stranger,” she wrote. “I will never forget it. Never in a million years did I anticipate this.”

The night before, a few dozen Ballard residents gathered at Golden Gardens Park in an impromptu get-together organized on the forum.

Many wore name tags displaying their forum names and avatars, printed up by iPlod, who wore his tag on his hat. They passed around a donation bucket for Lurkerbee which read, “Ballardites helping Ballardites.”

“There are so many times when we feel the Internet is something that keeps us distant,” said SunriseSunset, who helped organize the yard sale, and recently turned 71 years old. “It brought us all together through the Internet. It’s more like the old days in Ballard — I’ve been here since 1943 — that we can get together, meet each other, have fun and help each other.”

Geeky Swedes

The founders of My Ballard

20 thoughts to “Ballardites band together to help woman in need”

  1. Just when I think I've lost all hope in mankind, I see a article like this. I'm so proud of my Ballard neighbors. I wish I would have noticed this last week so that I was able to participate in the yard sale. I think we've all had moments where times were tough. Bless you all for looking out for your neighbor.

  2. Cool story. WB I think i walked by you as you were posting those signs at around 16th and 65th? This is Roadkill…Dan…I just don't like the duplicate log in for this end of the site.

  3. in picture #2 in the background sitting on the sidewalk you can see an owl picture… reminds me of third grade, my teacher had a thing for owls and had that picture in our classroom :)




  5. I said it in the thread, but I'll say it again here… I am even more thrilled to be a part of the Ballard community and I can' think of a better way to start off our experience of living in that home than with a wonderful community event like this one.

    I just volunteered my yard, everyone else did all the hard work of hauling stuff in and organizing and pricing and haggling and selling and then hauling everything left to Goodwill! You guys did a great job cleaning up too, thanks! You guys are a force to be reckoned with, I'm glad I'm on your good side! :-)

    Who ever has the photo of us all sitting on the steps, can you forward that to me? I'd love to frame that and have it on the wall in our house! My name here with gmail dot com.

  6. If it was Friday, that was me. If it was Saturday, that was juliesage. Was it in a crosswalk? Tall, slender, light colored (gray?) shirt? Or with a dog on a cell phone (you, not the dog)? Those are the two people I remember encountering. Oh, and my neighbor on the corner who saw me walking by and called out “Hey, are you WildernessBarbie?” :-) Interesting way to meet a neighbor!

  7. It was you…friday about 530 or so. I was walking to fremont and you were posting a sign. I am 31, white guy, 6' 175 lbs…hoodie, baseball cap, sun glasses. I don't know if we made eye contact. But I saw you! Intersection of (I suppose 16th? and definitely 65th) I can be seen walking around ballard all the time. Since I'm (still) unemployed, I walk everywhere whenever possible.

  8. I am touched by the goodness of Ballardites coming together in such a concrete and spontaneous way. I will be watching My Ballard more closely for other opportunities. Best regards to you all…

  9. This story brought a tear to my eye. This is what communities should do. I know most of y'all slam churches, but this is the perfect example of what Christian love should be. Loving and helping your neighbor.

    WB, I can't believe what a perfect location you have for a garage sale!

  10. Ah, sunglasses, hoodie, baseball cap say “Don't speak or look at me!” to me sometimes, so I can see why we may not have made eye contact. :-) Hopefully I'll see you out and about again some time, though say Hi next time!

  11. Dang, I know! My neighbor down the street is apparently famous for his furniture garage sales. Good to know if I ever need to have one we'll get such great traffic!

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