We have the very best staff in the world!

We wish to thank our volunteer staff for their hard work, dedication!  Our volunteers are true assests to Lakeview Foundation and our Thrift Shop.  Our community as a whole is a better place because of them.

Many thanks go out to the following staff members who recorded over 8000 hours of volunteer service in 2014:

Jim Alden, Connie Ashcraft, Tony Bentley, Marj Bouse, Sally Brinkman, Edrie Britten, Judy Butler, Penny Chaloupka, Kerry Cochran, Deanne Crane, Dorothy Dietz, Ginny Drogula, Brenda Elmore, Carole Erickson, Al Fader, Leanne Fader, Yvonne Ferrara, Pat Garrod, Pam Gehl, Jacqui Groenland, Bill Harris, Randy Hay, Ginger Helton, Kathy Hobbs, Morene Huggett, Sue Knudstrup, Lisa Johnson, Mary Kohn, Marlene Lake, Mike Lake, Eunice Luke, Sue Martin, Bev Mroczek, Jill Muir, Sue Mullard, Curt Newhouse, Deb Newhouse, Peggy Niemann, Cathy Paluch, Mary Peoples, Phyllis Peterson, Diane Pietrowski, Chris Pomeroy, Russ Pomeroy, Marcia Potter, Wayne Potter, Sally Quan, Rudy Reyna, Joanne Rossman, Barb Sampsell, Gary Sampsell, Rich Schiele, Sally Schiele, Bruce Shannon, Cheryl Shaw, Keith Shaw, Carol Sjoquist, Darlene Spalo, Audrey Spencer, Shirley Stewart, Connie Talsma, Carol Tedro, Nancy Terry, Tonda Warner, Marcia Williams, Darlene Wilson, Barb Wright, Mary Lou Wright, Garry Yack.
Additionally, the following people donated many hours that went unrecorded as many people came in to help when our new shop was being prepared and then moved: Joe Ferrara, Bill Markovich, Fred Martin, Judy Versaille, Mike Versaille, Lyle Huggett, Justin Warner, Freshwater Church H20 and Tidal Wave Youth Group

If you would like information about volunteering opportunities at Community Thrift Shop, including positions for  Cashier, Cashier Assistant, Customer Service, Donation Receiving, Donation Processing, Retail Staging. Please call 657-4186.

Volunteer Roundup!

April is volunteer roundup month at the thrift shop!

cowboy

Looking for Cowboys & Cowgirls

Giddee-up & head on over for your application!
We will be conducting tours of our “Ranch” on Thursday mornings at 10:30am during the month of April for anyone interested in volunteering
We would be happy to answer any questions that you might have regarding working at our shop.  Please give us a call or stop in!

A picture is worth a thousand words!

They say a picture is worth a thousand words……and it has been extremely busy at the shop all week so I have no time to write.  I know you are all wanting to hear how things went so here are some pics of our big opening day.  They tell a pretty good story!

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Looking Good! 10 Days to go!

Shelves and racks are filling up and we are getting comfortable in our new surroundings.  Most staff members like to take a stroll through the shop each time they come in to work, just to see what is new or has changed.  They say…”it looks like we are ready to open”.  And we say…”well………we are getting closer”!

Last week we fixed our attention on housewares.  Pricing and filling the displays.  This week it is clothing.  We are sorting, de-wrinkling, pricing and stocking our racks.  On the back end, we are working on setting up our donation receiving area which will be a trial and error situation for a while.  Next week, we will tweak and clean….put on the finishing touches and then be ready to open on Sunday, March 1.

I am hoping a large part of our team of 60 (plus) volunteers will be in attendance at our opening celebration.  We expect a very large customer response and would like to share their excitement with our staff members.  I think it will be one of those things that “you just had to be there” to get the total picture of how people will respond to our new atmosphere.

Only 10 days away! **** Opening Celebration  ****  Sunday, March 1 **** 12 noon to 5 p.m.

What progress!

Thought I would give you a little recap……

The first couple of weeks of 2015 was a busy time for the thrift shop.  We had dedicated people working on both ends.

At the old shop we broke down and moved pallet racks, shelving, and toy cubbies. The staff kept the place running and managed to keep the shop looking “ok” even with the missing shelving.  They set up a huge book sale to so we would not have to move them to the new place.  The work area was a “destruction zone” without the racks for organization.  Our people  took charge and were able to clean, price and pack merchandise into a large trailer to await transport to the new shop.

Between December 26 and January 6 the new place was a flurry of activity.  We began the transformation of our new surroundings the day after Christmas.  Our hard working crew made over the warehouse area of the old Gene Moon building.

10 foot tall shelving was assembled and installed to divide the warehouse allowing a portion of it to be used for retail.  Sheets of OSB board was painted and attached to one side of the shelving to create a wall.  The guys were extremely patient as the shelves first faced one way and then the other.  Then the whole wall was adjusted a couple of feet to the left, then a few inches to the right, then back and forth until it was just right!

Everyone pitched in when the white paint seemed a bit blah, we repainted everything to give the space a more comfortable homey feel.  All of the newly built walls were trimmed out and this really did finish the area.

We worked around tons of dusty, dirty construction and water plant stuff and had to shift it here and there as we progressed through the renovation.  The floors were scrubbed.  The remaining walls were painted.

Assorted items were cleaned, repaired, and cobbled.  They were then set up so this newly formed area could be divided to create our “rooms” where we will sell the appropriate merchandise.  We have a living room, bedroom, office area, kitchen, garage, toy and craft spot.  All of this space had previously been an open warehouse.

In the clothing areas of the shop, other projects were completed including custom shoe shelves and  child play area.  A beautiful checkout counter was made from two very large shelf units.  Display pieces were fashioned from items that we had used at our old shop or were in our storage.  Clothing floor racks were moved into the shop and the wall rack system was installed.

The work room was set up with 3 sets of double tables for our staff to finally be able to spread out as they process merchandise.  Slat wall was put up and shelving was brought in for sorting and storing.  Tons of “stuff” has been moved from the old place and is now sorted and placed in a convenient location.

In 12 days time, all of this was completed,  the old shop was still open and many other tasks were accomplished.

Then our very first trailer load of items were delivered on January 6.  We all celebrated because now the move was really happening.  It was a wonderful feeling, but best of all was the bond that was created between all of the people who were involved.  It was a flurry of activity in a very short time frame, it was bone breaking,  dirty work,  but our “work team” at both locations bonded while forming good memories and a new appreciation for each other as we completed each task together.

Now our old place is closed and our wonderful staff is working hard at our new shop putting on the finishing touches and filling all racks and shelves so we will be ready to open our doors on March 1st.

Don’t forget!  Sunday, March 1st, 12 noon to 5 p.m.

Opening Celebration to include…the best buys on earth!  We also have someone planning music, door prizes, silent auction, food and beverage!  You don’t want to miss it!

Sue’s Little shop memories and Big shop excitement!

In 2009, I was a member of the committee that was planning the Community Thrift Shop and I remember my very first walk through of the location west of Paw Paw.  The building was empty  except for insulation, construction tools and supplies covering the floor.  It was small but had a certain quaint feel to it…and felt right that our new little thrift store would fit nicely between the walls….And it did fit nicely……for a very short while!

Right from day one, we were blessed with donations.  So many donations that our shop quickly filled to the brim and we could not sell the items as rapidly as they were flowing in.  We did not have any room to work because of the donations piled to the ceiling, so we rented a small storage area just to hold a little furniture.  We filled it and rented a second small storage area and then needed a third.  We packed those too.

Donations continued to flow in so we decided that we needed to look into renting a semi trailer to park on our lot.  This certainly would be enough storage.  Right?  Nope…..we quickly crammed full the 40 foot long trailer and rented another one….and another one……

We let one of our smaller rental buildings go and put everything into one large rental building.  Now our total storage  was at three 40 foot long trailers and one double garage sized building….

We still did not have room for everything and added a tent to put up in the summer for working under.  We rented a 20 foot trailer to use with it as a side and also as donation storage.  Guess what!  They overflowed quite quickly!

All of these storage areas and a shop that was full to the brim was very often a challenge to be sure.  But I do believe that the lack of storage and cramped work space made us really think about what was important.  We kept things pretty organized and for the most part were able to find whatever it was that we were looking for.

The challenges that the lack of space created was often extremely difficult for me as a manager, but our volunteer staff never complained.  They worked through the piles of clothing, toys, house wares, books, and everything else.  Always smiling.  I don’t believe that I ever heard one of them say they could not or would not work on whatever the current task was.  They trudged through the donations in extremely hot and cold weather.  Keeping our little shop going in very difficult working conditions.

So it is for them that I am most excited to be moving into our new shop.  I thank the Tapper family for all that they have done to create a brighter and better work space for our volunteer help

Our shoppers will benefit as well in our wonderful well lit retail area.  Our sales floor will contain more men’s wear, furniture, house wares and we will be adding children’s clothing.  We will be offering more shopping hours as we will be open on Mondays.

For me, today is bittersweet….as I say goodbye to the old store and look forward to the new….I will always hold the memories of our little shop close, but am eager to begin working in our new location.

Mark your calendars!

One month from today we will open for business and hold an opening celebration.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

12 noon to 5 p.m.

Community Thrift Shop

1000 East Michigan, Paw Paw

Hours beginning on March 2, 2015:

Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.