Written by Carol Barry
“For every challenge encountered, there is opportunity for growth.” – Unknown
So many local businesses have not weathered the restrictions and protocols of the pandemic. Empty storefronts and For Lease signs are now visible in most shopping centers, downtowns and old towns. While we shelter in place in fear for our health and our very lives, once thriving local businesses are disappearing, owners giving up or retiring, and buildings vacated. For instance, you cannot find a shoe repair shop anywhere in Auburn these days; Roseville or Nevada City are the closest. Imagine that!
The Assistance League® of Greater Placer’s Thrift Shop has also had to close its doors . . . but not forever! We’ve had to protect our members and customers, honor county restrictions and wait for a safer time to re-open to the public. And that time is coming! Be on the lookout for an announcement soon.
Our Thrift Shop survives these hard times because of the generous donations from our members and our community. Every Wednesday from 10am to 2pm, its doors open just to receive donations. While sheltering in place for a year, most folks have utilized this time at home to clean out cupboards, closets, garages, sheds and drawers, weeding out items no longer useful and repurposing them. Donations continue to pour into the Thrift Shop each week, for which we are deeply grateful. Our dedicated volunteers continue to accept these contributions, sorting, cleaning storing, pricing and displaying them so that the Thrift Shop Grand Re-Opening will be utterly amazing!!!
What’s even MORE UTTERLY AMAZING is that our Thrift Shop will have a new “Fresh Look” for its reopening debut. Store managers Karol Hodgson and Jan Krug and their large team of managers and department chairpersons are taking advantage of the shop closure to implement ideas for more productivity and better utilization of floor and wall space. The doors may be locked, but you can still hear the hum of activity inside! Here are some of the improvements customers have to look forward to:
- The BOUTIQUE has been moved across the hall into a more spacious location. The old Boutique corner now houses LINGERIE AND ACCESSORIES.
- The BOOK CORNER has been discontinued and replaced by SHOES AND LAMPS, with a comfy upholstered bench for sitting while trying on shoes.
- An INTERNATIONAL exhibit features items from countries of the world, currently Africa and Asia.
- KID’S CORNER no longer carries toys; Kid’s clothing is now featured so that it is easier to see. Cabinets have been added for displays and storage.
- A whole new corner is dedicated to APPLIANCES.
- A focal point will be the new ART GALLERY, with art exhibited on painted barn doors that were donated.
- LINENS, BEDDING, FABRIC and YARN are now displayed together near the changing rooms.
- There’s a donated SOFA and COFFEE TABLE near the changing rooms for weary shoppers or spouses.
But that is not all!!! Nearly all the back rooms have been streamlined. Department managers gave valuable input which resulted in the following upgrades:
- The former back room is now devoted solely to hard goods, jewelry, eBay and Poshmark items, with ample space for collecting, storing, repairing, cleaning and pricing these items.
- Another back room (former office) is now devoted solely to clothing. One dedicated member’s husband even built new racks and bins to simplify the collecting, storing, repairing, cleaning and pricing of clothing.
- KID’S KORNER now has its own collection and work space where BOOKS were formerly stored.
- The OFFICE SUPPLY ROOM has been totally cleaned out and repurposed.
You simply cannot miss the beehive of activity, the excitement, the creativity, the energy and happy fatigue of a multitude of dedicated volunteers! They have transformed our Thrift Shop so that it is easier to shop in, and more spacious to accommodate a huge backlog of donations. Get your shopping lists ready!!!