June 2021 Letter from Chair, Jim Robb


Welcome to the 2021 version of the Kansas Mennonite Relief Sale. We are having the sale in July, rather than April, because of the uncertainty of covid and the pandemic.  We are at a point in Reno County known as the “new normal”.  There is still some risk, but it is much safer than it was in April, and so we are taking the important step of having the sale on July 2 and 3. 

The theme of this year’s sale is light and love…based on scripture with Jesus lighting the way, and showing us how to love and help one another.  After a year of pandemic and isolation to feel the love of serving Jesus is an important feeling.  Everyone who comes and volunteers, buys, or bids on quilts, or tractors participates in this feeling of light.

In some ways it will be different and communications from the KMRS Board have indicated that time and again.  But in many ways, it will be the same.  It will be in the friendly confines of the Kansas State Fairgrounds in Hutchinson.  We will be serving the ethnic staple of verenike with ham gravy and sausage.  There will be ice cream and pies, chicken and burgers, Russian pancakes, and lots of other good foods.  And for the first time in quite a while, we will have burritos.

We will have booths selling t-shirts, caps, yardsticks, and other items.  Quilters Corner will have lots of things to sell, Kansas Crafts will be open, Ten Thousand Villages and the Etc. Shop will have goods to sell.

But the focus for the past 50+ sales has been the auctions.  Around 300 quilts, comforters, wall hangings will be sold at auction. Some of them are ones made last year, but some of them were made especially for this sale.  Please check the Quilt Auction tab on the website to see the beautiful works of art.

During a break in the Quilt Auction on Saturday we will take a little time to celebrate last year’s MCC Centennial by auctioning 2 items…the pitcher presented to the relief sales last year to use for fundraising and telling the stories of MCC; and a replica of the Fordson Tractor model that was made to be sent overseas in the 1920’s to allow Ukranians to grow food for themselves. This was made especially for the 75th anniversary and is up for auction again…26 years later.

The General Auction will have 15 items brought to the sale through the work and influence of Jerry Toews.  These items include a Model T Ford, some professionally restored tractors, a couple of motorcycles and a pristine pick up.  In addition, there will be some other things that contribute to the success of the Kansas Mennonite Relief Sale. 

It will be a good two days and we hope to see you there.  There will be a place to drop off your coins.  There will be food to buy and take home.  There will be people to see, friends to catch up with and opportunities for your children to buy at the Children’s Auction.  We also have a special Collectable Toy auction this year.

The time is close, the buildings are air conditioned, the shuttle will be available to move you from place to place.  Mark your calendars and come to the Kansas Mennonite Relief Sale on July 2 and 3.

Bless you all and come prepared to bid and buy.

Jim Robb, Chair, KMRS Board