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Good local sales to hit in the month of June

When national publications such as Consumer Reports run sale calendars, they mention that appliances, gym memberships, and Father's Day gifts post Father's Day can be bargains in June. Sites such as DealNews.com smartly tell us what not to buy in June. TVs, grills and Apple products can be found at lower prices at other times of the year, according to Louis Ramirez at DealNews.

Those are sales that run nationally, but independent, local retailers offer even better bargains. Here are several.

Eversharp (344 Taft St. NE, Mpls., 612-331-5724) is an authorized Wusthof Trident service center that sells new and refurbished knives for 20 to 50 percent less than retail. During the annual tent sale held June 4-6, get straight blade knives ($2), scissors, lawn mower blades, and pruning shears ($4 each) sharpened. Sharpening prices have increased because of new and improved sharpening equipment, said owner Tom Jensen. Reconditioned items are on sale such as a Ken Onion 9-inch slicing knife for $60 and a Wusthof Icon carving knife for $70.

On June 12-14 Cooks of Crocus Hill treats its customers to its annual yard sale in front the St. Paul store at 877 Grand Avenue. Co-owner Marie Dwyer and her staff haul out cookbooks, cookware, knives, linens and gadgets and discount them 50 percent to start and up to 80 percent as the weekend progresses. Used stuff from the cooking school is "dirt cheap," Dwyer said.

I wish more Twin Cities neighborhoods were as as savvy at customer appreciation as 50th and Xerxes in Minneapolis. During its Summer Shop & Stroll sale June 19-21, participating shops take 20 percent off storewide, including Gallery 360, Vinaigrette, Minnesota Honey Co., Loft Antiques, Hunt & Gather, and Dunn Bros. Coffee.

Memorial Day sales--How good are they?

Memorial Day weekend doesn't stack up with 4th of July or Labor Day for good sales. It's too early for any serious summer sales, so don't go looking for great deals on grills or patio furniture, according to DealNews.

But if the weather turns rainy this weekend, check your favorite websites or stores for deals. The discount may only be 10 or 15% in some cases, but it may be site-or-storewide. J Crew is discounting everything including sale merch 30% with the code WEEKEND. Banana Republic is 40% off with the code BRSUMMER and Crate & Barrel is taking 15% off full-price, non-furniture items with code SAVE15.

All of the above codes can be used online or in stores. It's a good reminder to get on the email or social media lists to receive notifications of sales. If you don't see a discount on the site, ask for the Memorial Day discount code in store or in an online chat.

Locally, major thrift stores will be discounting most of their wares 50% on Memorial Day only. I think I'll use part of the weekend to collect items to donate to one of the thrift stores. FYI, if you didn't the stories about Savers, Valu Thrift and Unique Thrift being sued by the Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson, check it out here.

Savers and its affiliates are for-profit retailers, who only give nonprofit thrifts 40 cents per pound and often nothing at all, according to the suit. If you want your donated goods to get the biggest bang for the buck, donate directly to the charities, not Savers, Unique or Valu Thrift.