Great Glebe Garage Sale FAQs

Great Glebe Garage Sale FAQs

Great Glebe Garage Sale FAQs

What’s the connection with The Ottawa Food Bank?

From the start of the Great Glebe Garage Sale in 1986, the Glebe Community Association has encouraged vendors (and shoppers) to voluntarily donate some of their proceeds to the Ottawa Food Bank. As a charitable organization, the Ottawa Food Bank will issue tax receipts for donations. The 2017 sale raised over $14,000!   THANKS EVERYONE!

What is the date?

The sale is always the fourth Saturday in May; this year the sale will take place on Saturday May 26th, 2018 (from about 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  Many buyers arrive earlier).  

What will happen if it rains?

The sale will continue rain or shine! There is no rain date for the sale. Vendors are encouraged to plan on using tarps or garages if there is rain in the forecast.

Where is the Glebe?

The neighbourhood sale is held in the City of Ottawa in ‘The Glebe’, the neighbourhood bordered by Bronson Avenue, the Queensway (417), and the Canal. A number 6 or 7 OCTranspo bus going north/south on Bank Street will take you into the heart of the Glebe.
You can view a map here… Ideally, please keep your cars at home.

How do I donate to the Ottawa Food Bank?

The best way is to go directly to The Ottawa Food Bank website and make an on-line donation at:

There is a drop down designation selection on the online donations page. Please choose Great Glebe Garage Sale to make sure your donation counts towards the overall total for the event.

You can also mail your donation to:
The Ottawa Food Bank
1317B Michael Street
Ottawa, ON K1B 3M9

Given that most donations in recent years have been made on-line rather than in person, the Food Bank will not be at the Glebe Community Centre this year.

What was new in 2017?

Free Trees!

  • Over 100 of Ecology Ottawa’s volunteers distributed 1,000s of free tree saplings to residents and shoppers throughout the neighbourhood during the sale—the single largest one-day distribution of trees Ottawa has ever seen! Part of Canada’s 150 celebrations, Ecology Ottawa’s Tree Ottawa campaign lead a city-wide effort to plant 1,000,000 new trees in Ottawa—1 tree for every resident in the city.

Partnership with Kind Canada  

  • The GCA will be partnered with Kind Canada, a national not-for-profit organization that promotes and encourages all Canadians to help create a culture of kindness from coast-to-coast-to-coast. As a part of this initiative, the GCA ran several activities during the GGGS to help to promote and encourage kindness within our community. On the day of the GGGS, as you explored the neighbourhood, you could see posters with suggestions for small acts of kindness that make a difference in the lives of people around you. 

I don’t live in the Glebe. How do I register as a vendor or get space to sell my stuff?

There is no official registration; however there are restrictions as to where you can set up your sale.  If you plan to use private property, you need permission. Many churches and other organizations provide spaces for sales on their property.  For example:

  • Lots around Glebe Collegiate Institute, on Glebe, Percy and First Avenues: contact information to come.
  • First Avenue School Council is taking applications for spots, contact them at
  • Fourth Avenue Baptist Church is making spots available. You can email them at
  • Registration for vendor spots in and around the Glebe Community Centre will commence at a date TBA in the Spring, and continue until the event date or until all spots are gone.  More information to come.

Heads up to other Glebe organizations:  if you are making vendor spots available and want it posted here, email us at

Can I donate my stuff to be sold at the Great Glebe Garage Sale?

A number of local organizations accept donated items for sale.  Watch this space for details!

  • For example, last year, the Glebe Collegiate Prom Committee had a booth on the school’s property on sale day and  the Ottawa Centre Refugee Action (OCRA) was accepting donations.

For Glebe organizations:  if you are accepting donations of sale items and want information posted here, email us at


We’ll post volunteering opportunities here as we hear about them.

Can I set up a table on the sidewalk in front of my apartment building or in a local park?

No.  Vending on public property such as sidewalks, boulevards, roads, and parkland is illegal without a permit and you may be ticketed by Ottawa by-law officers.

What about food sales?

City of Ottawa food inspectors will be on-site on the day of the sale to inspect all vendors of cooked food. You will be inspected, so please be sure to be ready.  If you are planning to sell hamburgers/ hot dogs or other cooked food, it is important to know and comply with the City’s food regulations to make sure you meet the inspectors’ expectations.   You’ll need to give the city two weeks notice of your plans (it’s free).

The City’s website provides more information about these health-and-safety requirements.  See for more information and here is the link to the Application Form for Food Service at a Special Event. 

If you have any questions about selling food you can contact

If you are a chip-wagon or a hot-dog cart or another type of mobile food vendor, you are not allowed to vend in a residential area unless you have permission from the owner of a property (e.g. in a parking lot). Then you must also get a city permit for the day.

If you want to have a street party, be sure to read the information and follow the application process on City of Ottawa website at

What rules apply to sales of cooked food (BBQ)?

Baked goods such as muffins, cookies etc. are easy to sell at the GGGS (they must be wrapped).  However, any food requiring cooking, especially meat, requires careful planning. For example, if you are planning a BBQ on your property to sell at the GGGS, you must have a rubber mat or painted plywood flooring under the barbecue and a wash station available (perhaps a garden hose and soap) as well as facilities to keep raw food consistently cold.

If you are unable to meet the city’s public health inspector’s requests, you may be asked to discontinue selling food. Check the City of Ottawa’s website at to familiarize yourself with the rules.

What are some tips for a successful garage sale?

Set up early so that you are prepared for those early birds!  Price all your items, either individually or in groups (eg. books 25 cents). Display items on tables or in boxes according to type and/or price. Have a cash box or change apron with lots of coins for change. In the case of large items that can’t be carried away, an impromptu sales receipt can be drawn up with a deposit and an exchange of telephone numbers to hold the item until the traffic has dwindled and you can return with a vehicle to pick up your treasure.

Are there any other regulations regarding the items I sell?

Health Canada has posted information for garage sale vendors on their Consumer Product Safety website. Everyone holding a garage sale is legally responsible for ensuring that products being sold, whether new or used, are safe and meet current regulatory requirements. It is important to only sell items that are in good condition. Damaged articles should be discarded. You can find more information here.

What about parking?

Parking is limited in The Glebe at the best of times! We strongly encourage you to walk, ride your bike or take the bus for best access. If you must drive, kindly park your car and walk in to the neighbourhood to reduce congestion. The amount of pedestrian traffic makes driving dangerous for everyone. If you’re a Glebe resident, try to park your vehicle off the street to make room for the many visitors we expect again this year.  

If you do decide to try to drive into the neighbourhood, there are several public parking lots in the Glebe and some organizations offer parking on their property for a donation (such as Corpus Christi School at Third Ave and Lyon).   Your Credit Union is supporting the fight against ALS – Lou Gehrig’s Disease. For a $10 donation you can park in their lot at 14 Chamberlain Avenue (Bank and Chamberlain), and feel good about supporting local ALS patients.

Are there any designated no parking zones?

All the usual parking rules are in effect. Please check the posting of parking signs and ensure that you are not blocking a fire hydrant or driveway. Based on last year, parking restrictions are likely to be in place for the following locations:

  1. West side of Bank Street between Clemow Avenue and Fifth Avenue
  2. East side of Bank Street between Clarey Avenue and Fourth Avenue
  3. North side of Second Avenue to the east and west of Bank Street

 Parking enforcement will also concentrate on no stopping zones and double parking.

Are there ATM machines nearby?

Yes, at the Royal Bank, Scotia Bank and Kettleman’s Bagel Shop, Shoppers Drug Mart as well as at Lansdowne Park (TD Canada Trust and BMO Bank of Montreal). There is also an ATM at the Loblaws on Isabella and a TD Canada Trust right next door.  However ATMs empty out early, so best to bring cash (including change and small bills) with you.

How can I reduce my environmental impact?

Vendors – please place a garbage can by the curb for litter. With the large crowds this event attracts, there can be a large amount of litter produced. At the end of the day, clean up around your property and ensure you don’t leave debris on the street. Shoppers – please hold on to your litter until you see a garbage can and then stash the trash.

What about recycling?

Once the day is over, please be ready to tidy up and pack things away. The GCA Environment Committee is again running an environmental stewardship initiative that will help us dispose of left-overs so they get re-used or recycled.  Here are collection points for drop off:


As part of this, Glebe Collegiate Institute (Glebe CI) will be holding its fifth annual free electronics drop-off after the Great Glebe Garage Sale on Saturday afternoon and all day Sunday, May 27 & 28.  This is a fundraiser for GCI and is staffed by volunteers from Glebe’s environment club, TWIGS. Electronics accepted will include: TVs, VCRs, DVD players, all phones, all printers, all cameras, clock radios, e-readers, all speakers and all manner of computer equipment and peripheral devices. If you have difficulty moving or transporting your electronics to Glebe, you can contact Judith at to arrange pick-up.  She will organize the pickup, showing Glebe CI identification.

What about access to public washrooms?

Ecology Ottawa will be providing access to public washrooms, sinks, and a water bottle refilling station—part of their commitment to our community.  This year they will also include a wheelchair accessible unit and a baby-changing-station-equipped unit, all located at Ecology Ottawa’s Great Glebe GREEN Garage Sale, 680 & 690 Bank Street in the Kunstadt Sports and Rogers Plus parking lots near the corner of Bank Street and Glebe Avenue.

There are also public washroom facilities available on the second level of Fifth Avenue Court (Fifth and Bank Street). The Glebe Community Centre (Third and Lyon), Glebe St. James United Church (650 Lyon St.) and St. Matthew’s church at 217 First Avenue (near Bank St.) may also be open to the public.  In some cases, donations are accepted.  

Rain or shine, buyer or vendor, have fun on May 26th – and don’t forget to share your luck with the The Ottawa Food Bank.

Because the Food Bank purchases food items in large quantities and has a number of food industry partners, every dollar you donate is worth about $5 in food.

If you have any questions that have not been addressed in this FAQ, please send an email to


2018-03-06T15:59:47+00:00 April 5th, 2016|Great Glebe Garage Sale|2 Comments