Being the Saturday before Mother’s Day, today brings the traditional Fair Oaks Street Garage Sale in  San Francisco. Located one block east of Dolores Street, Fair Oaks is 5 blocks long, running from 21st to 26th Streets. This address is considered Noe Valley in spirit although technically part of the Mission District.

The annual Fair Oaks Street Garage Sale in front of Victorian homes

The annual Fair Oaks Street Garage Sale in front of Victorian homes

It is amazing that an entire neighborhood can get so organized to have this major block party and sale which serves as a fundraiser for the Jamestown Community Center, a nonprofit organization benefiting Mission neighborhood youth. Then again, they’ve been practicing for over 30 years. There seemed to be many vendors selling jewelry, clothes and junk who appeared to be professionals so  I am not sure that their proceeds go to the community center.

Vintage toy train accessories at annual Fair Oaks Street Garage Sale

Vintage toy train accessories at annual Fair Oaks Street Garage Sale

In any case, it is fun to just watch the activity or find a Mother’s Day gift. Food sold along the street include traditional fundraising goodies such as cupcakes, popcorn, carrot cake and cookies. Since this is San Francisco, not to mention the Mission district, tamales were also being hawked. Filled with moist chicken and a surprise—diced carrots—these were a delicious treat for $3.

The best treasures are perhaps to be found in other garage sales in the area capitalizing on the Fair Oaks traffic. At 25th and Dolores, outside a Victorian mansion, the offerings included antique wrought iron and a Thonet washstand.

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