The end of July is quickly approaching, which means three things in Iowa City:

  1. Annual leases are about to expire.
  2. Hundreds of people will be moving in and out of their homes and apartments.
  3. Rummage in the Ramp is almost here! 

Rummage in the Ramp, now in its ninth year, will take place Friday, July 24 through Sunday, Aug. 2. Rummage in the Ramp is the City’s annual mega-recycling event in which students and local residents are encouraged to donate, rather than throw away, items they no longer need or want. The donated items are then sold at bargain prices during a nine-day garage sale. It’s a pinnacle event in the local reduce/reuse/recycle/repurpose/upcycle way of thinking, and one in which everybody wins. Each year, the event helps people inexpensively furnish their living spaces, keeps tons of still-usable goods out of the landfill, and raises thousands of dollars for local nonprofits. 

Bargain shoppers and anyone looking to furnish their homes or apartments can find everything from furniture and beds to clothing, books, pots, pans, dishes, exercise equipment, electronics and other household goods, including many unique, one-of-a-kind or hard-to-find items. Proceeds benefit the local non-profit and student groups who work at the event.  For a list of groups, visit

The sale will be held on the ground floor of the Chauncey Swan Parking Ramp under the College Street bridge, across from City Hall (410 E. Washington Street) and adjacent to the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center parking area.

Donations and sales

Donations and sales will occur simultaneously during these times:

  • Friday, July 24: 4 to 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, July 25: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, July 26 - Friday, July 31: noon to 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 1: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, Aug. 2: noon to 8 p.m. 

On the last day, everything goes! Beginning at 4 p.m., staff will implement a “Name Your Price” sales event. Come on down, see what’s left and tell us what you’ll give for it! 

Electronics and small appliances

All electronics and small appliances will be accepted -- even those that aren’t working. If they are not in good working order, please let the sale assistants know so non-working items aren’t placed on a sale table. 

A recycling fee of $10 will be charged for donated TVs, computers or laptops (working or non-working) in case these items do not sell. 

Pick-up service

Pick-up service is available for Iowa City residents who want to donate items but have no way to transport them to the ramp. The pick-up fee is $10 (plus an additional $10 fee per item for TVs, computers or laptops). Beginning in mid-July Iowa City residents may visit to schedule an appointment. This service is available only to households within the City of Iowa City limits. 

Gift certificates to every 50th customer

Every 50th customer will receive a Rummage in the Ramp gift certificate to use on Saturday, Aug. 1 or Sunday, Aug. 2, making an already great deal even better. 

Last day specials and celebration

On the last day, Sunday, Aug. 2, staff will implement a “Name Your Price” sales event beginning at 4 p.m. Come on down, see what’s left, and tell staff what you’ll give for it. From 4 to 8 p.m. that day, a Rummage in the Ramp celebration is planned.  Stay tuned on Facebook at and for more information. 

New this year 

Rummage redux—from serviceable to spectacular!

We are working with artists to pick a small number of items to repair/repurpose/upcycle to show how items can go from serviceable to spectacular. The items will be showcased at several events in the community this fall. 


Rummaging takes energy…and what better way to get that than local food trucks! As a growing community event, Rummage encourages permitted food trucks to station nearby the event to feed volunteers, donors and shoppers! 

Rummage in the Ramp is co-sponsored by the City’s Landfill/Recycling and Neighborhood Services Divisions. For more information, visit or contact Jennifer Jordan, City of Iowa City Recycling Coordinator, at 319-887-6160 or, or Marcia Bollinger with Neighborhood Services at 319-356-5237 or

Date of publication

Wednesday, July 08, 2015