What’s the deal with … the German church sale?

It might be the only place you can find sauerkraut and stilettos for sale in the same place.

The United Church-Die Vereinigte Kirche on 19th and G streets, more commonly referred to on campus as “the German church,” has a rummage sale once a year where assorted items spill onto the sidewalk that students walk down en route to home and class.

“There is everything from coffee pots to computers to vintage clothes,” said Lietha Dreyfus, the church’s secretary and a member of the congregation. “It’s sort of the randomness that students love.”

This year’s sale, an annual event for nearly 30 years, will take place Wednesday and Thursday. Dreyfus estimated that the church has thousands of donated items for sale this year, and almost all of them cost $5 or less.

Last year, the rummage sale generated nearly $15,000 for the church to put into its social programs, such as the church’s food pantry and a school it sponsors in India. The church also offers a traditional German lunch during the sale.

The United Church has been part of Foggy Bottom long before GW. It was a neighborhood church in the area’s German community called “Hamburg,” founded in 1796 by a German settler, according to the church’s Web site.

“This church has been here since 1833,” Dreyfus said. “Before GW was here, there were a lot of homes. This used to be a community church.”

Now, with neighbors such as Thurston Hall and the Law School, the church sees more students than settlers.

Dreyfus said, “I have tracked students through their entire years at GW through watching them at this sale.”

-Caitlin Carroll

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