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Volunteers Help Golden Valley Thrift Store Thrive

New To You Thriftique contributes 100 percent of its profits to the scholarship program at Calvin Christian Schools.

The 22 people that sort donations, price items and help customers each week at Golden Valley's New To You Thriftique don't get paid a dime.

The volunteers are mothers, fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers to children who attend Calvin Christian Schools--a private chain of schools with a high school in and Kindergarten through eighth grade schools in and Blaine.

And, if the fact that the entire store is manned by volunteers isn't enough, 100 percent of the shop's proceeds go toward a tuition scholarship fund at Calvin Christian Schools.

"During the economic downturn, in 2008, our school's enrollment really dropped," Christine Weiss, co-chair of the store, said. "They decided to open the store as a way to allow students to stay enrolled, rather than being forced to move to another school."

New To You Thriftique gets donations from , the , Calvin Christian Schools campuses, and a few other unlikely places.

Jeff Belleau, a Golden Valley resident and owner of Caring Transitions of Minneapolis, has been donating items from estate sales to the thrift store since its opening.

"I knew that a lot of my clients would appreciate a donation that was going to benefit christian schools," Belleau said. "I wanted to focus on developing a relationship with a Golden Valley business. They are a wonderful group of people."

Beth Heaton, who runs the shop alongside Weiss, said that she feels blessed to be volunteering at the store. "We work here because we want to," Heaton said. "We get to see the blessings filter out of this place. It's really amazing."

As co-chairs of the thrift shop board, Weiss and Heaton spend roughly 20 hours a week working at New To You Thriftique. Weiss, who is also an interior designer for Martha O'Hara Interiors, made it her mission to keep the thrift shop prices low.

"Before we opened, I drove down what I call the 'thrift store strip' in Golden Valley and gathered pricing information," Weiss said, referring to the many thrift stores on Winetka Avenue. "We're competitive, especially in clothing."

New To You Thriftique holds promotions on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, which include reduced prices on clothing, accessories, books and dvds. And while half-off necklaces and kids clothes attract shoppers, Thriftique volunteers pride themselves on their ability to give back.

"Last week, a woman came in here who had lost her home in a fire,"  Heaton, explained. "We decided to help her and we donated items to her."

Giving, in general, is a well-known concept to the volunteers that work at the sore.

"We really appreciate the sense of community here in Golden Valley," Weiss said. "Beth and I don't live here, but we feel like we are totally art of the family. Everyone is so supportive."

Elizabeth September 08, 2012 at 03:53 AM
I purchased some beautiful clothes for next summer on a half off Tuesday. I'm really happy to know that the proceeds are distributed back to the community!
Carolyn Kaehr September 10, 2012 at 03:22 PM
I found a beautiful oil on canvas painting at the thrift store several weeks ago, bought it, and plan to give it to my pastor in October for Pastor Appreciation month. I know that he'll love it because it will remind him of his growing-up years in Holland !! I know that it's worth much much more than the price I paid for it, too. I stop at the shop each Tuesday, when clothing is half price, and look around at everything. The oil painting was a true "God Wink" that surprised me because of its beauty and what the scene will mean to him and his family !! I'm very glad that proceeds from the shop help continue Calvin Christian Schools, too, as many students benefit so much by the Christian education provided !!!

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