The line began forming outside the door around 2 p.m., three hours before the SPCA's new rummage shop in Charlottesville opened for a special sneak preview Friday.
By 4:45, nearly 50 people were waiting in line, while about 30 volunteers inside put the finishing touches in place.
"I've got my eye on the riding mower right there," said Barry Ross as he stood at the head of the line, looking through the window at a red tractor.
And right behind Ross, Christian and Barbara Chandler were waiting to shop. Christian wanted toys and video games, while his mother wanted to look for fabric.
Sue Mantz, who will be running the new store, said the Charlottesville-Albemarle Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' annual rummage sale previously brought in more than a quarter of the group's annual revenue. Proceeds from the 2006 sale were $263,000; the SPCA's annual budget is around $1.1 million.
Items donated to the store will be resold to help pay the SPCA's bills.
Susanne Kogut, the group's executive director, said the SPCA hopes to also conduct a rummage sale this year. She hopes the sale and store will give the society an extra $100,000.
"The year after, we expect to do 50 to 100 percent better," Kogut said.
The society helps between 5,000 and 6,000 cats and dogs each year.
The store sells everything from baby clothes to big-screen TVs. Some of the early highlights include every episode of "The Twilight Zone" and a full set of "I Love Lucy."
However, the store will not accept paints or other flammables, mattresses and some other materials. A full list of unacceptable items can be picked up at the store.The store is at 943 Preston Ave., and will be open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, with donations accepted from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on those days.