BETHLEHEM, Pa. -

Last Saturday morning, lines snaked around the block in one Bethelehem community for the Lehigh Great South Side Sale.

The event, which raises money to benefit after school homework clubs for local schoolchildren, saw its largest amount ever raised in a single day's business.

By the time the sale ended six hours after it began, $19000 had been raised.

Said Kim Carrell-Smith, Professor of Practice at Lehigh University's Department of History, "It was an amazing day, we beat our old record of $16500 by at least $3000 and we are still counting since we have a few items to sell separately like art work and a 1930s percolator."  

According to Carolina Hernandez, director of Lehigh's Community Service Office, about 146 volunteers contributed nearly 1400 hours to make the event a success.

The organizers attributed the success of this year's sale to the exceptional merchandise donated by the Lehigh Community and the extraordinary support from many students, staff and faculty.

Volunteers spent as long as 12 hours working through four shifts on the day of the event and many others pitched in.

A crew of seven came from the El Shaddai Church to help clean up and pack up at the end of the sale while members of the football team helped break down tables and load up the Goodwill truck to haul away the leftovers.

To underscore the importance of the sale to the community, the event was officially opened by Lehigh University president Alice Gast and Bethlehem mayor Bob Donchez.

These officials were also accompanied by representatives of several civic organizations, local school and government officials and supporting business leaders.

Carrell-Smith said many of the local dignitaries thanked them for the collaboration between the university and the city.

The Move-Out program started 16 years ago when Professors Carrell-Smith and John Smith got the idea to collect, sort, price and sell items discarded by students leaving campus for the summer.

The first drive brought in $500 dollars, a proverbial drop in the bucket, compared to the $19000 raised Saturday.